Privacy Archives

For The Paranoid Among Us

Time was when the classic image of somebody bugging somebody electronically involved finding a Sam Spade wannabe in some hole in the wall office with little more than a filing cabinet or two, a bottle of scotch and a huge desk that served as a place to store a box of Dutch Master cigars, a bottle of scotch and a loaded gun for when the “bad guys” showed up to rough him up.

Now it’s all too easy for almost anybody to get hold of some very sophisticated electronic snooping gear just by ordering it online.  And there are more and more people doing the snooping too.  It’s not just relegated to Humphrey Bogart lookalikes or the government’s assortment of “men in black”.  It could be a suspicious spouse, a nosy neighbor, or (if you’re well off enough) a thief who wants to be sure of when you’re planning to be gone for a few hours so that they can clean you out at their leisure.

Well, I just saw a good answer to that problem on Think Geek, it’s a mini bug detector that can spot nearly all types of wireless transmitters.  What’s really cool is that it’s actually fairly cheap to own given the wide range of stuff it can detect.

Technorati Tags: bugs, bug detector, snooping

Drudge Report Anon Tips Not Anon

I just saw something on the alt.privacy newsgroup that has managed to confirm once again that most people don’t have a clue when it comes to protecting their anonymity.

The writer was talking about how they had tested a “tips” box near the bottom of the page that has the heading: “SEND NEWS TIPS TO DRUDGE [ANONYMITY GUARANTEED]”.

They put TESTING ANONYMITY in the box and hit send while running a packet sniffer sniffer to see what was transmitted.  The result was, of course, quite predictable and included their IP address as the point of origin for the data along with the time and other information such as user-agent strings & standard http headers.

Here’s what they apparently didn’t get.  The only anonymity that something like this can EVER give is their promise not to reveal information from their server logs unless required by a court order, national security letter or big beefy guys with black suits and rubber hoses & brass knuckles.  That level of anonymity will keep you from ending up on a direct mail marketing list but will it protect your identity?  Never.

If you want to protect your identity on ANY website, the thing to do is use an actual privacy tool such as the TOR browser bundle which, if it is used properly, gives you high degree of privacy.  Oh the form will still send all the same information but that information will belong to the TOR node your traffic exited from instead of yours, making you VERY hard to track down.

Technorati Tags: drudge report, anonymity, anonymous browsing, anonymous tips

Spy Phone Reports Your Every Move

The latest thing in Big Brother technology is a rather “special” mobile phone that uses a combination of GPS technology and Software that analyzes data from the phone’s accelerometer which enables employers to track employees on an unprecedented level, even to the point of being able to tell what an employee is doing in addition to merely keeping tabs on their location.

Not only is this hideously invasive, it’s only a matter of time before governments decide that EVERYBODY needs to be tracked on this level and start requiring ALL phones to have this technology built in.

Technorati Tags: tracking, evil corporations, employee monitoring, big brother, domestic spying, spying, evil government

Sad Day For Net Users In NZ As Goverment Internet Filter Goes Live

According to an article on Scoop Independent News New Zealand has joined the ranks of nations with really aggressive, secret internet filters operated by the government.

Apparently two NZ ISPs, Maxnet and Watchdog, have already implemented the filter and three more, Telstra Clear, Telecom and Vodafone have stated that they will be implementing it.  Only three ISPs, Orcon, Slingshot and Natcom have said that they will not be using it.

Another blow to freedom of speech on the internet as net filtering by governments becomes more and more prevalent.  First China, North Korea and Iran, recently Australia and now New Zealand.

The US government has recently spoken out against government filtering of the internet, with Secretary of State Hilary Clinton saying that “Those who disrupt the free flow of information in our society, or any other, pose a threat to our economy, our government and our civil society.” She then said that the US is committed to helping people to circumvent government internet filtering.

One can only hope that this isn’t just more of the same meaningless hollow drivel that the currently way too liberal US government is famous for and that it will lead to some real support of technologies that are designed to prevent internet censorship such as TOR, Freenet and Anonymous Remailers.

Technorati Tags: tor, internet filter, censorship, freenet, remailers, new zealand

Why Doesn’t My Office Have A Lock On The Door?

I’ve wondered from time to time over the years just exactly why it is that my office door doesn’t have a lock on it that I can set from the inside when I’m busy.  I’ve even asked about it only to get looked at like I’d just arrived from Mars or something.

The thing is, I think it’d be a great idea.  Nothing says “No, Mr. Helpful, you are NOT welcome to barge into my office and start “helping” me when I’m busy.” like a door that locks from the inside.  I figure that along with having security on speed dial *might* just get the message across someday.

But then again I could be wrong.

Technorati Tags: mr helpful, irritant, door lock, moron, security

 Page 3 of 43 « 1  2  3  4  5 » ...  Last »