2013 is the year that proved your ‘paranoid’ friend right – The Washington Post

It’s now a matter of public record that the NSA collects and stores the calling records of domestic phone calls, tracks the location of millions of mobile devices worldwide, infiltrates the data links between the data centers of tech companies used by millions of Americans, piggybacks onto commercial tracking mechanisms, collected potentially sensitive online metadata for years and actively worked to undermine the privacy and security measures that underpin the Internet. And considering the purported size of the Snowden cache, that could be the tip of the metaphorical iceberg.

And while the NSA story alone undoubtedly gives the “paranoid” plenty of reasons to say “I told you so,” a slew of other reports from this year gave them even more reasons to retreat into the wilderness and start subsistence farming.

None of this means that we should all give up on modern technology or that we now live in a surveillance-state dystopia. But it just might mean that we live in a world where things that were once considered far-fetched science fiction fantasy are increasingly being revealed as reality.

And that you owe your paranoid friend a beer.

A beer or three would be nice, but I’m happy to receive a proper, snail-mail apology letter if you’re on a budget.

On a serious note, I’m deeply concerned that despite the unprecedented actions we’ve seen from the Federal Government this year, most people are still skeptical of where this is all heading.  We’ll see the first real cracks in the façade this year.