Edward Snowden has been called a patriot and alternatively a traitor for his role in leaking classified documents about government surveillance. Details about government programs to collect phone, email and other communications of people worldwide (including Americans) have led to judicial review, new legislation, and a community debate over the tradeoffs between privacy and security. It has also been claimed that the leaked information has put national security at risk and has damaged our diplomatic relationships with allies.
You are to write 5-10 page midterm paper focusing on the ethical issues related to Snowden's actions. Were his actions ethical and justified? Do the positive outcomes of his revelations outweigh the risks to intelligence personnel? Provide sufficient background on Snowden's actions and their impact in order to frame the ethical issues. In your analysis, you should make specific reference to the two ethical dimensions described in the Laudon paper: rule-based vs. consequence-based and individual vs. collective. Your paper should reference at least five reputable sources.