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We are surrounded by modern conveniences that our civilisation has bought us. Many people could not imagine living without a mobile phone, Internet access or their PDA. Unfortunately these leave us open to data theft. A dropped mobile phone can result in business contacts being freely available to anyone who finds it. A lost PDA can results in confidential documents being disseminated, possibly with disastrous consequences. Personal details can be hijacked by Phishing emails, where by a spammer sends and apparently official e-mail asking for confirmation of personal details. These can come from banks, ebay, paypal, hundreds of various organisations. And in all cases they are designed with one intention in mind, to steal your log in details for use in their own nefarious schemes, whether that be clearing out your bank account or using them as a front.
Espionage equipment is now easily available from online stores like espionage-store.com. These type of shops offer phone taps, key loggers and remote microphones to anybody, all at typical low, low price we expect from a capitalist society. Anyone could now purchase and use ‘computer keystroke recorder’ for example. This small device simply plugs into back of your computer between keyboard and P/S2 socket, and can record any and all keystrokes made. There are similar software programs that load when computer starts which can perform a similar purpose. All conspiracy theorists would like you to believe that anyone can be monitoring what you do. And they could be.
Today your actions can be viewed and recorded by anyone. Encryption can be broken, documents can be stolen. Google and other online presences can easily track you by your IP, or by depositing cookies onto your computer. In a sense we are living in WWII Germany, every neighbour could be a spy. But there are more impacts that our modern culture can have on our way of life, many of them just as pervasive as possibility of being watched. For a continuation of this discussion please look out for my next article - ‘Little Brother – Newspeak cometh’. Until then just think, anyone could be watching, are you taking necessary precautions?
All of Daniel Robson’s musings can be seen on his site www.shock-therapy.org, along with a collection of freeware games and applications for Windows PCs and Symbian UIQ smartphones.