Proportionality remains a vague concept, in part due to the inherent difficulty of balancing two fundamentally important, but potentially conflicting values, particularly when no recognised method exists to definitively determine where the balance should lie. In the current global climate, privacy has increasingly found itself balanced against the necessity of a wide range of intrusive technological measures judged essential to the state’s fight against terrorism. The range of measures involved can make assessing proportionality complicated, as relying on the proportionality test which isolates and examines a particular legal measure independently, might not adequately identify the total risk presented to an individual’s privacy. In this article, it is proposed that one way of addressing this issue is through turning to the biological concept of the ecosystem for guidance. [---]