Nothing to Hide: The False Tradeoff between Privacy and Security

Author: 
Daniel J. Solove

"If you've got nothing to hide," many people say, "you shouldn't worry about government surveillance." Others argue that we must sacrifice privacy for security. But Daniel J. Solove argues in this book that these arguments and many others are flawed. He claims that those arguments are based on mistaken views about what it means to protect privacy and the costs and benefits of doing so. The debate between privacy and security has been framed incorrectly as a zero-sum game in which we are forced to choose between one value and the other. Solove asks, “Why can't we have both?”

In this concise and accessible book, Solove aims to expose the fallacies of many pro-security arguments that he claims have skewed law and policy to favor security at the expense of privacy. According to Solove, protecting privacy isn't fatal to security measures; it merely involves adequate oversight and regulation. Solove traces the history of the privacy-security debate from the Revolution to the present day. He explains how the law protects privacy and examines concerns with new technologies. He then points out what he perceives as failings of our current system and offers specific remedies. Nothing to Hide makes the case for reaching a better balance between privacy and security and reveals why doing so is essential to protect our freedom and democracy.