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What Does the Greenpeace, the Tea Party, and Code Pink Have in Common? Reset the Net!

It has been almost a year since NSA analyst Edward Snowden leaked a treasure trove of classified documents to Glenn Greenwald and Laura Poitras. Despite the initial shock of just how much information the government has been able to collect about Americans and non-Americans alike, the internet still moves onward.

Yes, we know that the NSA is able to read our e-mails and check out what sites we browse. Yet, even with that knowledge, Americans still log on each day to watch porn, do research, watch porn, view online programming, communicate with family and friends, and watch porn. While none of us would want our browser histories to become public, the knowledge that they can hasn’t deterred anyone.

Thus a new campaign called Reset the Net implores people to “take back” their privacy from the NSA. While much of the specifics of the Snowden revelations have been over-the-heads of all but the most computer-literate, it essentially means that the NSA exploits inherent weaknesses in common security protocols.

Reset the Net argues that by “building NSA-proof security into the Internet every day, we can regain control of our data.” They offer information about secure browsers, that keep browsing histories safe not just from the NSA but from sites like Google and Facebook who use that data to target ads to users.

The campaign is led by Fight for the Future, a nonprofit group working to combat restrictive internet laws such as “premium fast lanes” and the SOPA bill. More than 200 sites and organizations have joined in this campaign including Reddit, Imgur, the ACLU, Greenpeace, ThoughtWorks, the Libertarian Party, and Code Pink. Such a diverse collection of groups, many who see the world in vastly different ways, being united on this issue is remarkable.

Many websites are already trying to install NSA-proof security, but there are small steps individual internet users can take in order to protect their data.

Photo via ResetTheNet.org

About the author

Joshua M. Patton is a father, veteran, and writer living in Pittsburgh, PA. Along with news and current events, he writes about parenting, art, and personal stories. His serial fiction story "The Prophet Hustle" is available at JukePop.com and a forthcoming independent ebook about the cam-modeling industry "Dirty Little Windows" will be available later this summer.