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Cellphone: The Tracking Device in Your Pocket

cellphone the tracking device in your pocketWe all love the convenience of mobile technology. A smart phone with it’s integrated GPS, email, calendaring, office suites, a zillion apps and the ability to call and text is a true wonder of the modern age, but there is also a potential dark side to this technological marvel. Every time you slip it in your pocket you are on the radar and your movements, position, orientation and conversations are all open to someone. You are carrying the tracking device in your pocket!

Cellphone: The tracking device in your pocket

In the 1960’s, the powers-that-be decided that they needed to intercept, record and catalog every phone call. This project was called Echelon. One thought to be a crackpot, conspiracy theory, has been revealed numerous times, by involved governments, in the 1990’s.

Now, 100% of your communications are captured, and stored for data-mining and to determine if you are a threat. This includes all types of Radio communication on all frequencies!

Local, State, and Federal agencies also have Stingray technology. A stingray is a false cell phone tower that can force phones in an area to connect to it. Once these devices connect, the stingray can be used to hone in on the target’s location or to eavesdrop on conversations, text messages, and web browser activity.

Stingray

This is a “legal” man-in-the-middle attack, where your mobile device has its data routed through a fake cell tower and collected….without warrants.

 

stingray-700x845-640x772

Shhh… Someone is Listening!

Calls:

Be aware that every call you make, whether it’s on a cell phone, land line or VOIP phone is recorded by the government. You can thank the Echelon program and the Patriot Act (ironic name). This isn’t whacky conspiracy theory stuff, this is the truth. Do some online searches to verify, we always encourage you to fact check everything, with reliable internet data or other research.

If you are on a call, it’s being recorded someplace and run against audio analysis for detecting certain key words and phrases. It will be archived FOREVER, so they can always run the call through the analysis again, when new key words and phrases are added.

These are the keywords that some government agencies use to monitor social media so I’m assuming the key words for Audio Analysis are very similar.

keywords

The point to keep in mind here is that you have no privacy in your phone, cell phone, voip and audio/voice communications.

Microphone:

Now that you understand your lack of privacy while using your phone to make calls let’s take it a step further. Your phone’s microphone can be remotely activated even when you are not using the phone.

WHAT?

Yes that is correct. The government (or your cell phone carrier/provider) can remotely turn your cell phone into a listening device (you’re being bugged) EVEN WHEN YOU ARE NOT MAKING A CALL!

Proof: FBI taps cell phone mic as eavesdropping tool

Here is someone’s work around to prevent that (flip phones only): Cell phone privacy modification

Location

GPS:

Mobile phone GPS is awesome. It makes it so simple to find places and navigate. What I don’t like is that the government (or carrier/provider) can track my location anyplace, as long as it’s on.

I know what you’re thinking “I’ll just disable, turn off the GPS feature.”!

Good thinking, but WRONG.

Your GPS can be remotely activate and track you, all the while, making your phone lie, and indicate that the GPS is off or disabled. That’s right, the phone will tell you that it’s GPS is off while reporting your location.

Cell Tower Triangulation:

Even if you don’t have a smart phone, or you figured out a way to block the GPS from remote activation, your location (within 1000 meters) can be triangulated, using your cell phone signal and the towers you are connected to.

Yes, even the cheapest cellphone with no advanced GPS or Smartphone features can be located very easily this way. This data has been used in criminal trials and is pretty well published if you want to read up on it.

cell tower triangulation location

What can you do?

Microphone eavesdropping

To avoid remote microphone activation and bugging, take out the battery when you want to have private face to face conversations!

You can also boot the phone into DFU mode (Device Firmware Update), which shouldn’t have have any drivers loaded, except for the USB input and internal storage access. 3G, 4G and GPS, should be unactivated… but this might change in the future.

Avoid Stingray, warrantless wiretapping and cell phone intercepts

Android users, you can use AIMSICD (Android IMSI-Catcher Detector) to get notified when your cell signal is tampered with.

The AIMSICD app does not:

  • Provide secure phone calls (see RedPhone available in the Google Play Store)
  • Provide secure SMS (see TextSecure or SMSSecure)
  • Provide secure data transmission for your Android Phone (see Orweb browser, which requires Orbot that connects to the Tor mesh)
  • Provide app permission control (XPrivacy, requires ROOT access on your phone)
  • Provide secure application sand-boxing
  • Provide ROOT and remove bloatware
  • Provide firewalls (see AFWall+, requires ROOT access on your phone)
  • Provide full device encryption
  • Prevent already installed rogue applications from full access and spying

Caution: Using this App will not guarantee that you will be shielded against surveillance of any form!

GPS and Location Tracking

Take the battery out of your phone, boot the phone into DFU mode or leave the cell phone at home when you want your location to be private and use a stand alone GPS, good old fashioned road maps or a Road Atlas to get where you’re going. Don’t put that battery back in until you are someplace that you are fine with being known by others, who might be tracking you. Use your head if you are going to a secret place, leave that battery out until you get back to home or a usual place. This will prevent giving anyone, who’s monitoring you, a heading or direction of travel to your secret place!

A Road Atlas in your car can be worth it’s weight in gold!

General Anonymity

You might want to consider paying cash for a pre-paid phone activating it from someplace neutral (not your home or office) and keeping the battery out of it until you have to use it. Then only use it in public or neutral locations. Remember when you buy more minutes PAY CASH also. You don’t want this “burner” phone tied to you in any way!

A pre-paid phone can only be used for a short while, before your calling trends will start to identify who you are, so you may have to repeat the process of buying a phone and remotely activating it often. This is the price you pay to have a cell phone and maintain your privacy. I agree, it shouldn’t be this way.

We all love our smart phone, even if its the tracking device in your pocket. If the SHTF and I need to bug out and be off the radar, I am removing the battery from this phone, stomping on it and tossing it in a trash can.

No GPS on this burner!