The origin of “You have nothing to fear, if you have nothing to hide” is unclear but the saying is believed to be based on George Orwell's book 1984. It has also been attributed to Nazi Joseph Goebbels. The argument is not of recent vintage. One of the characters in Henry James's 1888 novel, The Reverberator, muses: "If these people had done bad things they ought to be ashamed of themselves and if they hadn't done them there was no need of making such a rumpus about other people knowing." My response to the "If you have nothing to hide" argument is simply, I don't need to justify my position. You need to justify yours. Come back with a warrant, because I don't have anything to hide. But I don't have anything I feel like showing you, either and it's about things not being anyone else's business.
George Orwell depicted a harrowing totalitarian society ruled by a government called Big Brother that watches its citizens obsessively and demands strict discipline.