Whether one thinks of Edward Snowden as a hero or criminal, we can all agree that something must be done to prevent his as well as the government’s actions from happening once more. Those who think of him as a hero suggest that his leaking of the government’s spying helped millions of Americans and major companies realize that their classified information was no longer classified. On the other hand, those who think of him as a criminal note that he broke the law by stealing and notifying news organizations of the government’s spying. Either way, it is crucial for the government to cease this from happening again.
One realization of the problem is simple: there are too many classified documents and too many people who have the ability to leak them. An article on foreignaffairs.com by Sue Mi Terry gives the example, “the existence of a CIA training facility, Camp Peary, in Williamsburg, Virginia, is supposedly secret even though Camp Peary has a Wikipedia page that lists its exact coordinates” (Terry). This is a perfect example of how this “private” information should not actually be seen as private. If it is not completely necessary for a document to be classified, it should not be. Many secret documents are actually provided in public literature (Terry), and therefore should not even be kept from the public in any way.
Overall, one of the best solutions would be to set the bar higher when deciding which documents should actually be classified. When the government hides millions of documents, there is a higher chance of someone leaking the “private” data. Therefore, by declassifying some documents, fewer people would have access to important information.