A powerful article by Guest Blogger: Jason Gorbett
When my family was threatened I had to go dark on the internet – all on my own. Before I found a security expert, I had no idea who could be looking back through the cameras at me. Or worse, my girls.
I love to share what I’ve learned because I’ve never found one book, website, app, or person who could tell me quickly and clearly what to do if someone was after me or my online identity. Because who would need that? That kind of thing only happens in movies, right? Well as it turns out, normal people cross paths with darkness every day. And unfortunately so much of it is hiding in plain sight.
Fear is the enemy. It makes small things in the dark very large. It is your imagination that eventually devours you if you don’t control it. The best way I’ve found to control it is learning.
The lantern of knowledge will light your way.
This is how we can feel safe in an out of control world. There are practical steps. Logical. Common sense. They don’t take James Bond, a Navy SEAL, or a million dollars and a helicopter – the requirements I found in the books at Barnes & Noble, which I paid for with my credit card not so secret gently. I was clueless. I called our operation “The Witless Protection Program.” I can save you a lot of time and fear. It won’t get any harder than this.
So without further introduction, here are some things you can do to be safer online and therefore in the world since there is virtually no way to separate them anymore. You can take control. Be an internet superhero.
The first thing you do is put tape over those little cameras on your phone and computer. Ha ha right? Ha ha yes. You may not be dealing with top tech talent, then again, cameras get hacked, software gets hacked, and back doors are found all the time and sold on the black market for less than $1000. If you have a smart TV it’s capable of watching you too. Anything smart, anything online, anything cellular can be hacked or traced unless you know how to put protocols in place in order the order is very important. Otherwise the number one rule experts will tell you for Internet privacy is to stay off the Internet. Unfortunately, people make money keeping you and your information on the Internet — at the expense of your privacy. More on that later.
Besides, staying off the Internet isn’t very practical, so the second piece of advice I’m going to give you is to buy an old flip phone with cash hopefully without cameras. If this feels a little Back to the Future, don’t worry. We have to go back to the past to get to the future. Cyberspace is a crazy place. It’s not science fiction. If the public has it, you can bet the government had it 15 years ago.
The good news is the people who actually do work in the government don’t care. They have way too many serious bad guys to deal with without worrying about what most of us are doing in the privacy of our own homes. And your new flip phone goes by the name “burner phone,” because you can afford to burn it at any time. This gives you instant street cred. Use it wisely. And don’t be lazy and just use your uncle’s old burner (see?). If anything happens linked to that burner, Uncle Saul’s going to sweat the heat.
Next is one of the most important resources you’ll ever have for privacy or anything else in life. Cash. Cash is king. Cash is freedom. It’ll get you anywhere you want to go with the fewest amount of questions, and unless you’ve done a bank heist, the bills are not marked.
Now, use your cash to buy a credit card. What? Am I Insane? Maybe, but remember I said we had to go back to the past before we could go to the future? Now you are going to get a little Jane Bond. First cash, then the vanilla visa card which you will buy with that cash so it can’t be traced to you. You may not need to get in this deep. But at least now you know and understand the thoughts behind the actions.
Fifty dollars is a good amount to put on the visa, but 20 will get you started. The next steps may seem extreme but what about a woman leaving an abusive spouse? What if there are children to consider? As they say, knowledge is power. You want to go to the library and use a guest pass even if you’re a regular. Log in anonymously to one of the public computers. The guest pass should have a login name and password for year. If not make up a name.
Now that you’re set up at the library anonymously on a public computer, and you have your vanilla visa card, you are ready for the next step. Naturally, that’ll be covered in section 102: Diving Deeper…
Thanks for following, it’s well worth it, it’s important for your safety, and for protecting your Constitutional rights. They’re still one of the few things that make freedom anywhere in the world possible at all.
Interested in learning more about eliminating personal online information? As you can tell it’s a fascinating subject. Visit Inteltechniques.com for expert advice from Michael Bazzell. He has an amazing website full of information, an e-newsletter and two fantastic books.