What if somebody told you that you were being monitored inside and outside your home 24 hours a day? Would you believe them? Most people wouldn't. However reality is often scarier than fiction. Chances are if you're reading this, you likely live in a nation that utilizes the following tracking methodologies that have only one purpose...to digitally record and catalogue your every move.
For the past two decades, there has been a malevolent movement across industrialized nations to track individuals without their knowledge and with a total disregard for privacy.
Just two years ago, the Associated Press reported that 100,000 cell phone years were being secretly tracked outside of the United States. That first-of-its-kind study by Northeastern University raised privacy and ethical questions for its monitoring methods, which were illegal at the time in the United States.
The scientists would not say where the study was done, only describing the location as an industrialized nation. Researchers used cell phone towers to track individuals' locations whenever they made or received phone calls and text messages over six months. In a second set of records, researchers took another 206 cell phones that had tracking devices in them and got records for their locations every two hours over a week's time period.
The study was based on cell phone records from a private company, whose name also was not disclosed.
Spying by big brother and now international corporations is habitual across the globe. It can take on any form from listening to phone calls, intercepting wireless communications, infiltrating protest groups, monitoring emails/internet usage, biometrics and many more. Agencies are increasingly connected through various information sharing measures, making it more likely that information collected on an individual by a small police department could end up in the hands of a lettered agency's database such as the FBI or CIA.
According to the ACLU's recent report, we are living in a surveillance society where domestic surveillance and erosion of privacy standards are at an all time high.
Here are the top 5 ways you are being digitally monitored and tracked on a daily basis:
1) Computers and Internet -- Internet browsers are recording your every click forming detailed cookies and browsing sessions on your activities. The NSA has been exposed as having cookies on their site that don't expire until 2035. Major search engines know where you surfed last summer, and online purchases are databased, supposedly for advertising and customer service uses. IP addresses are collected and even made public. Controversial websites can be flagged internally by government sites, as well as re-routing all traffic to block sites the government wants to censor. It has now been fully admitted that social networks such as facebook and twitter provide NO privacy to users, while technologies for real-time social network monitoring are already being used. The Cybersecurity Act attempts to legalize the collection and exploitation of your personal information. Apple's iPhone also has browsing data recorded and stored. All of this despite the overwhelming opposition to cybersurveillance by citizens. The fact that laptops -- contributed by taxpayers -- spied on public school children (at home) is outrageous. Years ago Google began officially to use computer "audio fingerprinting" for advertising uses. They have admitted to working with the NSA, the premier surveillance network in the world. Private communications companies already have been exposed routing communications to the NSA. Now, keyword tools -- typed and spoken -- link to the global security matrix.
2) GPS -- Global positioning chips are now appearing in everything from passports, to cars. More common uses include tracking employees, and for all forms of private investigation. Apple recently announced they are collecting the precise location of iPhone users via GPS for public viewing in addition to spying on users in other ways. Cell phone tracking via GPS and location privacy is starting to emerge as a big issue, especially with more GPS enabled cell phones on the market. Most VOIP and e911 rules now require that your phone must be registered with your location data when you make a 911 call. However, many users are discovering that their GPS phones are transmitting their location 24 hours per day.
3) RFID -- It becomes unnervingly easy to imagine a scenario where everything you buy that's more expensive than a Snickers will sport RFID tags, which typically include a 64-bit unique identifier yielding about 18 thousand trillion possible values. KSW-Microtec, a German company, has invented washable RFID tags designed to be sewn into clothing. And according to EE Times, the European central bank is considering embedding RFID tags into banknotes by 2005. RFID "proximity cards" take tracking to a new level in uses ranging from loyalty cards, student ID, physical access, and computer network access. Latest developments include an RFID powder developed by Hitachi, for which the multitude of uses are endless -- perhaps including tracking hard currency so we can't even keep cash undetected. (Also see microchips below). VeriMed is the first and only FDA-approved patient identification system that uses an implantable RFID microchip. Hewlett-Packard recently announced it's working on a project it calls the "Central Nervous System for the Earth" which will deploy a trillion sensors all over the planet.
4) Biometrics -- The most popular biometric authentication scheme employed for the last few years has been Iris Recognition. The main applications are entry control, ATMs and Government programs. Recently, network companies and governments have utilized biometric authentication including fingerprint analysis, iris recognition, voice recognition, or combinations of these for use in National identification cards. Data from closed-circuit televisions mounted in a public spaces can feed into biometric software that uses a template to determine relative distances and relationships between various facial features. If the software matches the facial features from the live feed with those in any specific database, it can be recorded and archived for future use. There is currently no regulation anywhere in the world to protect the right of privacy for the features one shows in public. Admittedly used at political campaign events, sporting events, and most recently at the G8/G20 protests in Canada, biometric facial recognition is also harvesting data from Facebook images and surely will be tied into the street "traffic" cameras.,
5) Blood, Body and DNA -- Blood from babies has been taken for all people under the age of 38. In England, DNA was sent to secret databases from routine heel prick tests. Several reports have revealed covert Pentagon databases of DNA for "terrorists" and now DNA from all American citizens is databased. Digital DNA is now being used as well to combat hackers. The timeline for integrating injectable nano-microchips inside of vaccines is speculative, but it could be just a few years, months or perhaps it is here and we already unaware of their integration within pharmaceuticals. Regardless, due to the many military and political advantages, their implementation is inevitable. Nanobot technology could just as easily be used to advance monitoring and biological weapons as they can to advance human health. dubious modalities are being modeled in neuroscience to make perpetrators of crimes accountable before they even commit these crimes. Dubious brain scanning modalities are being modeled in neuroscience to make perpetrators of crimes accountable before they even commit these crimes. New security airport scanners are so efficient they can pick up passengers' personal details such as breast and genital size. The hi-tech machines now installed in major airports worldwide are the subject of great controversy since the scanning technician is able to print, export, store or transmit the image.
All of this is leading to Predictive Behavior Technology -- It is not enough to have logged and charted where we have been; the surveillance state wants to know where we are going through psychological profiling. It's been marketed for such uses as blocking hackers. Things seem to have advanced to a point where a truly scientific Orwellian world is at hand. It is estimated that computers know to a 93% accuracy where you will be, before you make your first move. Nanotech is slated to play a big role in going even further as scientists are using nanoparticles to directly influence behavior and decision making.
The more we refuse these invasive technologies, the greater the opportunity to defeat them and terminate their use. We must stand united and refuse to be scanned, tracked, traced, injected or recorded against our wishes. Further compliance by the public will only guarantee further restriction and corruption of our privacy and freedom.