IELTS Writing task 2 (Advantage Disadvantage Essay)

Nowadays technology is increasingly being used to monitor what people are saying and doing (for example, through cellphone tracking and security cameras). In many cases, the people being monitored are unaware that this is happening. 

Do you think the advantages of this development outweigh the disadvantages?


Give reasons for your answer and include any relevant examples from your own knowledge or experience

Write at least 250 words.




In recent years, advantages in technology have allowed governments, the police, and privately-owned companies to keep the public under constant surveillance. In many major cities and towns, security cameras are recording the movements of ordinary citizens. Whenever a cellphone is used, the call is logged, so the service provider knows exactly when and where the user made the call. Invisible satellites orbit the Earth, watching us whether we like it or not. Is this, however, a development we should welcome?

Certainly, there are benefits. In areas where there is a high crime rate, the use of security cameras may act as a deterrent to crimes: if they can see the cameras, they may think twice about breaking into a building or stealing a car. If a crime is carried out, then a camera may provide useful evidence. The same true for a cellphone; the police sometimes rely on call logs to help them trace the whereabouts of suspects or victims. 

On the other hand, there are a number of concerns. In countries where human rights are ignored, the use of security cameras or listening devices may be harmful to society. People should be able to hold the meeting and express their opinions without their privacy being invaded. There is also a very different issue we should consider. Nowadays, many people upload their personal information and photographs onto social networking sites; they often do not realise how easy it is for other people to view this information or for the site owners to use the data or photographs for their own financial gain. 

To conclude, it seems inevitable that there will be more and more ways to monitor society in the future. However, it is our responsibility to evaluate new technology and device whether it will do more harm than good. Surely our freedom is more valuable than technological progress. 


309 words

Source: The Official Cambridge Guide to IELTS for Academic and General Training. 

6 thoughts on “”

  1. In recent world, augmented utilization of technology allowed observing people’s activities about which they are completely unknown. This essay will demonstrate how such monitoring can control criminal activities but also will show that this can lead to such problems as loosing privacy. Whilst acknowledging that there are drawbacks, the essay will argue that the merits of spying individuals outweigh the disadvantages.
    One of the major advantage is reduction in the rate of illegal activities. By tracing one’s gadgets can give access to watch their inappropriate actions which could be terminated before execution by the aid of local police. A good example of a city that is taking full advantage of such technology is Texas. Regions that were once dominated by culprit activities are now much under control of local cops. Furthermore, it also provided additional security to citizens by keeping an eye on their homes and working places. In China, for instance, the rate of stealing money and heist dramatically dropped by 70% after using such technological supports.
    However, on the flip-side, excessive monitoring of an individual could led to some issues. One of the most alarming of these is exposing private life of a person. By using the same means someone can blackmail others and demand money not to disclose their personal movements. To exemplify this, one recent news article revealed that local police threatened some families to forcefully gain some advantage of their situation in Russia. Hence, it is also required to keep away such technological facilities from the thieves and criminals.
    To conclude, although unprotected use of monitoring technologies can result into increase in transparency of people, it greatly lowers down the rate of local crimes. Therefore, the positive effects of such spying technology definitely outweigh the pitfalls.

  2. Many governmental structures today take the advantage of the newest digital gadget to monitor their citizens, without their permission and eve some time interrupt their private life. Although there are legitimate reasons for oppose this reform, there also various benefits associated with the circular television system.
    Opponents of this theory often point to the countless drawbacks associated with this current trend. The intervention in citizens’ private life should not be considered like a positive development. To begin with the fragile private information, like an observing credit card transaction, which carries an increased risk of fraud from criminals and dishonest officials. Someone who already knows your credit card number or other bank credentials could easily purchase various valuable items for themselves, without your permission and even with the minimum balance. Furthermore, by tracking the Internet and social media users global corporations could discover the main interests of the public network user and later bombarded them with unethical, irritating calls and digital ads. These calls could distract employees from their main duties and as a result work productivity will droop.
    Nevertheless, consider some negative details listed above, tracking citizens’ private life could bring a tonne of merits both for the individuals and society. Start with the fact that nowadays the majority of planet dwellers densely packaged in downtowns, of giant cities,which suffer from hire rate of juvenile delinquency. The constant vigilance of the most crowded areas could help to prevent petty and major crimes. Such minor crimes as pickpocketing, vandalism, street robbery, and drug dealing could be easily curbed by monitoring the criminal neighborhoods. Furthermore, by using city cameras and other cutting-edge technologies children and parents could successfully observed each other moving and keep in touch with their nuclear and extended family members in case if dangerous situations. This could be stop ao prevent most extreme cases.
    In conclusion, despite some tangible drawbacks of adopting newest monitoring devices on citizen’s private issues, in the majority of cases, it has positive development on society at large and alow increase safety in the over-crowded areas. So the advantages of using such technologies outweigh their drawbacks.

  3. In the recent days, due to the intense technical developments, many people are being victims of being recorded for the activities such as the places they visit, the time spent there or even what they did there without their consciousness. Tracking of personal data is mostly done by using cellphone tracking or the security cameras. Technical growth has multiple advantages which are benefiting many people worldwide however, there are equal number disadvantages.
    Developmental work in the field of technology has had a rapid growth in the last few decades which are essential for the daily activities now. Firstly, communication has been simpler when compared to the olden days where, writing letters were the most popular means of communication, which was slow and inefficient (mostly never reached the destination). Access to a huge number of information and statistics is now easier and can be obtained at our finger tips. Technology has found a place for itself in every aspects of our life.
    Many disadvantages can be listed for this topic, one among them which is on the spot light is the illegal monitoring and use of personal data. For instance, according to an online survey, parents and child hardly get a chance to meet each other on a daily basis rather choose to video call or send messages. The particular reason for this situation is due to the improvements in technology.
    With all that in mind, with the increasing number of benefits, there comes the risk of having to face problems. Technology was supposed to be a bridge between people however, over use of technology has created a barrier between us. It is in our hands to see the sunny side of the technical growth and use them wisely.

  4. With the advance of technology in the past decade and the increasing acts of aggression worldwide, it was only a matter of time before technology will be used to monitor people.
    In the next paragraphs I will discuss the advantages and disadvantages of civilians monitoring.

    The main purpose and biggest advantage of monitoring civilians is getting intelligence of potential terrorism attacks and other acts of violence in advance in order to stop it in time and save lives.
    Had we had the same technology back in the 90s and it had been used to monitor people worldwide as it is today, we probably could’ve avoided 9/11 catastrophe all together and save thousands of innocents people.

    However, the most obvious disadvantage of this approach is invasion to privacy. Average people that just want to live their lives in peace are constantly being watched and examined. One could say that if you have nothing to hide, why would you care about being monitored? Well, just because I haven’t done anything wrong, it doesn’t mean I want somebody to know every move I make and may or may not use it against me, which leads me to next disadvantage – misuse of private data.

    Finally, following the previous disadvantage I mentioned, there is the aspect of data usage.
    Not only most of us are not even aware we are being watched, but none of us knows who are the men behind the cameras and what are they doing with the information they gathered.
    For example, during covid 19 pandemic, Israel’s government decided to enable cellphone tracking to make sure people who should be quarantined will stay in their homes and to notify civilians in case the were near someone who has covid. A great intention indeed, however, someone decided to use this data for his personal vendetta.
    A few months after approving cellphone surveillance, I read an article about a women who received at least 3 sms messages from the health care department stating she was around someone who tested positive to covid and should go into lock down for two weeks.
    Turns out she never was around a sick person and her ex boyfriend, who works in the health department office, used the data he had on her to send her this messages from the health department.

    To conclude, I think monitoring civilians holds tremendous advantages as long as the collected data is being used only for saving lives, but as long the people who decides what to do with this data are not being monitored themselves by any known human rights organization, this method needs to be promptly stopped.

  5. Technology is advancing in ways beyond expected. For instance, nowadays it is used to monitor every step taken by humans that is there are cameras installed everywhere to monitor our day to day activities or the call we make to each other. This essay will discuss both the advantages and disadvantages of this feature of technology and explain how its benefits overpower the drawbacks.

    Technology has always been a wonder to humankind and there have been various instances where it has helped so many individuals in ways one could not even imagine. Records show that crimes rates have significantly fallen in neighbourhoods after the installation of CCTV cameras and that thieves think twice before even entering a locality where they are under strict supervision. The same happens when conversations are recorded as it not only informs about the whereabouts of the kidnappers, suspects and victims but also provides evidence of their morality.

    On the other side, there have been concerns about it as it has jeopardized individuals thus interrupting their privacy. Being continuously spied upon also made people anxious. Not only this, with the increasing use of social media wherein people post their photos for entertainment purposes, there are have been scenarios where other individuals have misused this technology for their dusty benefits thereby offending the others.

    To conclude, despite having some drawbacks such as occluding privacy and mishaps if we use technology appropriately with a positive aspect in mind, it could make the world a better and safer place to live in.

  6. Certain activities of people are increasingly being recorded through cellphone
    tracking and security cameras. Most of the time, people are not aware
    of being monitored. Although this monitorization may hinder peoples’
    privacy, it is essential to maintain peace and order in society.
    In my opinion, monitoring people to improve their own safety is an
    effective use of technology and is entirely advantageous.

    Novel technologies are being used in favor of citizens’ safety and
    maintenance of law. Cameras and cell phone tracking can be effectively
    employed by government bodies to track down the culprit or whoever is trying
    to disturb the order and peace of society. Indeed, there are several
    encouraging examples where even dangerous mishappenings like terrorist
    attacks, back robberies, etcetera were prevented as the law maintenance
    bodies were able to trace the conspiracy by monitoring the activities.
    Ergo, tracking people’s activities using technology plays a crucial
    role in maintaining citizens’ safety and keeping them abided by the law.

    In stark contrast, many believe that monitoring what people are saying
    and doing may create disturbances in their privacy. Privacy is a fundamental
    right of every human being and is significantly vital for
    everyone. Technologies can be adversely used in order to commit certain
    outrageous crimes such as privacy hindrance, digital theft,
    monitoring without consent, and even using this data for blackmailing
    the victim. For example, a person’s cellphone data can be breached. There are
    a few potential drawbacks regarding one’s personal life and the safety of
    digital assets.

    The increasing use of technology for monitoring peoples’ daily activities
    without their consent has a number of pros and cons. Despite recording routine
    can be proven dangerous in a few cases, it has many rewards from a larger
    perspective. In my opinion, the advantages clearly outweigh the disadvantages
    as citizens’ safety cannot be ignored.

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