Monday, July 25, 2011

Privacy Is Dead

This is article #2 of 5 for random week.

Every few years there is a conference that is held in New York City called H.O.P.E. For the past few years a private eye names Steve Rambam has been giving a talk called Privacy Is Dead, Get Over it. It is a couple hours long, but you can just listen to it play in the background if you like. Besides, you could do a lot less with your time then listen or watch it. (Any of the other talks are also incredibly interesting as well, check them out on their website.)

The only way not to be tracked is to
take your cell phone battery out...
oh wait

If you watch this video, one of the surprising things you will learn is that you can be tracked by your cell phone signal through antenna triangulation. GPS is not necessary. That's right, your physical location car be determined by the one thing you bring everywhere with you, even if it is off. In fact, this contributed to how the computer hacker Kevin Mitnick was caught.

In an incidentally same-named article, you can read about your loss of privacy over Facebook. Facebook exists in order to find out what to market to you. Everything you type into it, private or not, including private messages are indexed and saved in a giant database.

Under the impression that Google is doing the same, I have been trying to make this website the first search result that comes up when prospective employers search for my name. Speaking of which, "Carmino De Maio Jr". I have also decided to remove as much as my information off my Facebook as possible, and turn all then security features all the way up. Even though it's too late, and my information is probably saved in a giant computer underneath a desert somewhere; I did this instead of completely removing my Facebook because in one month I will be in another country, and I know all of my "friends" are going to want to see what I am up to. Why not use this as a way to drive traffic to my site instead? If I am going to be taking lot's of pictures, and actually doing things on Facebook other than voicing my opinions on what other people do; I think I should be holding the license for, and receiving the ad revenue for that content. As Facebook is trying to generate more and more revenue, I can promise you they are going to be doing the same exact thing with your personal information.

Prospective employers love hearing about your political opinions!
I think about all the political scandals that seem to crop up every month or so, I mean when we have a public officials, or sports stars, taking photos of their genitalia and sending it to other people online, what does the future have in store for us?. I cant wait to see when the people that grew up with social networking start running for public office. We are going to be seeing lots of kinky pictures of politicians, and it's going to be grand.

This all wont happen to someone because somebody forgot to set the privacy settings on their high-school Facebook profile. One of the points Lulzsec made when they released the personal information of hundreds of thousands of people was how insecurely their information was being stored by Sony, Fox, and other companies. Had they never announced they even took the information, no one would have ever known. What happens in ten years? That's a lot of time for your personal information stored by anyone you have given it to, to be compromised. Ever ordered food online? Bought something off Amazon? Have Netflix?


  1. great insight. i knew about cell phone tracking but i didnt know it even could track while it was off too!

  2. Regarding phone tracking and data retention (and practicing some German) :

    Also know this?