Tag Archives: cell phones

American’s Under Surveillance: NSA admits tracking cell phone locations

The National Security Agency (N.S.A.) has started to come clean about tracking Americans cell phone data and what data was being collected. NSA admits to tracking the cell phone location of Americans in a test pilot project in 2010 and 2011.

According to the New York Times, “it was unclear how many Americans’ locational data was collected as part of the project, whether the agency has held on to that information or why the program did not go forward.”

NSA  claimed that they never moved forward with the program.  The “experiment” pilot project was to test how location information would move into the massive databases containing other information on Americans.  Cell phone location is considered to be one of the most sensitive data that a cell phone emits, according to the Electronic Frontier Foundation.  Since most people carry their cell phones everywhere they go it is possible that the location data tracking could lead to the government knowing most intimate daily habits and movements of not only the person whose phone is being tracked but friends and family members whom the person had come into contact with throughout the day.

The biggest problem with NSA’s admission of the test pilot program is that it admitted to doing an illegal activity.  NSA’s chief Keith Alexander said during a Senate hearing, “Under Section 215, NSA is not receiving cell site location data and has no current plans to do so.”  The recent admission of past collection clearly violated Section 215 of the Patriot Act.

In order to counter-act negative reaction to the admission, Director of National Intelligence (DNI) James Clapper told Congress that if they started their location recollection program they would inform the intelligence committee and FISA court. That means that Americans could still be kept in the dark if the program, a clear violation of the Patriot Act and one that brings up Fourth Amendment issues, were to become restarted.

I feel safer already, don’t you?

Distracted Driving: Is the Canary Project App Really A Good Idea?

We all have heard about the horror stories and a growing number of us have been touched by this growing nightmare personally…distracted driving. How many times per day do you see someone next to you talking on the cell phone or sending a text? After so many people have died, it is unbelievable that so many people still find it to be okay to do so. This is especially rampant among our teenagers. In response to this, a new app called “The Canary Project” has been released. Simply call it Big Brother for parents of teen drivers as it pretty much keeps tabs on what they do and where they go. Is this the way to go to truly make a difference? Let’s look at the good and bad:

What does Canary do?

Essentially it can tell the parents when the child is using the phone while driving. It might be that the child is texting or talking on the phone. If the child’s phone is unlocked and in use while a vehicle is going more than 12 mph, the parents will get a notification. It also can tell the parents where a teen might be in a given time period or if they go outside of certain parameters that are set by the parents geographically.

Why Canary might be a bad idea

The only people who would really be against this idea would be the teens themselves. On the surface it feels like a device that invades privacy. It tells parents when and where, but very little of the what. This means that kids will struggle to break curfew or go outside of certain boundaries without having to answer for it. Teens will no doubt be against such parental vision, but what rules and regulations are welcomed by teens?

Why Canary could be a great idea Continue reading Distracted Driving: Is the Canary Project App Really A Good Idea?

Bodacious babe caused FBI to nail alleged Anonymous hacker

They are nameless, faceless and anonymous.   They are hackers extraordinaire.   Some refer to them as a modern day “Robin Hood” as they steal from the data wealthy and give to the poor.”  Others disagree and say there is nothing heroic about their efforts.   But recently one of them turned “traitor” to stay out of jail and another one was “nailed” by the FBI all thanks to one “bodacious” babe.

Higinio Ochao III, was recently charged as one of the Anonymous, CabinCr3w, that hacked into law enforcement databases, collecting and releasing the names,  addresses and telephone numbers of police officers across the United States.  This could have put a number of law enforcement officials, as well as their families in danger.

This Linux administrator is also being accused of hacking the websites of the Alabama and Texas departments of public safety in February in support of the occupy movement.   This  criminal complaint alleges that Ochoa, who went by the Twitter handle @Anonw0rmer and that while hacking in the County of Houston’s website in Alabama  Agent Scott Jensen says,

“The attacker created fake events on their online calendar, posted images representing Anonymous and CabinCr3w, deleted all the administrator accounts except the one created by the attacker. All of this was accomplished by gaining unauthorized administrator access to the site’s control panel.”

Ochao strongly denies working with the FBI and other law enforcement officials, but seems to have no problem sharing his disdain for their organization and their interrogation techniques.   You can find what appears to be his full statement on PasteBin.

So how did this protestor extraordinaire get busted for hacking?   It’s a tale as old as the Bible.  Some would say it’s a modern day version of Samson and Deliliah.  It’s hard to tell if it was a beautiful woman that caused him to be busted, but law enforcement officials are claiming it to be one great big “bust” based on a bodacious babes boobs.  Yes, that is some of the evidence against Ochao.

Apparently Ochao tooks some pictures of his Australian girlfriend and posted them on his Facebook account, Twitter feed and on his websites.  If you can look past her size to the sign you will see the statement “PwNd by w0rmer & CabinCr3w <3 u BiTch’s !” 

The Twitter account directed followers to a website on which they could find more information about the  ”oppression by police departments around the world … EVERY police department is at risk and will remain that way …”  Another featured a picture of a woman with a sign stating ”We Are ALL Anonymous We NEVERForgive. We NEVER Forget. <3 @Anonw0rmer”.

You can not see the woman’s face in any of the photos but that doesn’t stop the FBI, which claims in the affidavit, that the same woman seems to be appearing in all the photos. (Photos available at Daily Mail News)

Most of us aren’t hackers, but we have been warned of the dangers of our location being found as we take, upload and share photos taken from our Smartphones and iPhone.   For most of us the danger of doing so probably won’t lead to an arrest, but for many it could lead to it’s own set of problems.

 

Cell phone tracking becomes common practice by law enforcement

Geotagging dangers 

 

 

Wishing to Avoid Smishing and Vishing Holiday Scams?

So it wasn’t enough to learn that the “worms” involved in “phishing” scams weren’t on the end of a hook.  Now the FBI warns that this holiday season we also need to watch out for “smishing” and “vishing.”

Is all of this just identity theft gibberish?  Let’s decipher the “ish” family.

Phishing scams are online scams that target you through your e-mail.  Phishing scams may claim to be anyone from the FBI to the Better Business Bureau to EBay to your bank.  Of course the faux link will take you to an unsafe site where hackers will phish away for your personal information.

With every new piece of electronic equipment we buy and each new upgrade in technology, it seems that hackers and identity thieves find a new way to use our new toys to steal of money and our Christmas joy.

Smishing isn’t a new holiday dance; it’s a new scam.  Smishing scams are similar to phishing scams but smishing scams target you through your cell phone.  Smishers may send a text message to your cell phone or else place an automated call to your cell phone. Continue reading Wishing to Avoid Smishing and Vishing Holiday Scams?

Cell Phone Tapping: The Scary Truth about this Techno Crime

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Note: If you have a legitimate reason
for tapping someone else’s cell phone or using GPS Tracking
(like reading dangerous texts to your children),
then we recommend the following:
Text Messages: Cell Phone Spy
Other tapping: Mobile Spy
—————–

It sounds like some kind of high-tech cyber stuff right out of Ocean’s Eleven, except it’s very real.

Tracking, eavesdropping, viewing text messages are all possible with versions of cell phone spy ware that make identity theft as well as cyber stalking possible.

Continue reading Cell Phone Tapping: The Scary Truth about this Techno Crime

“Who’s calling, please?” ReverseMobile.com has Answers

Have been barraged by a number of missed calls with no message? Have you received annoying or even obscene phone calls? When your phone is ringing and you don’t know who is calling, it can quickly escalate from irritating to down-right scary. ReverseMobile can help you answer your questions.

Continue reading “Who’s calling, please?” ReverseMobile.com has Answers

Not Kiss and Tell but Clickatell: An Effective Tool in Preventing Identity Theft?

If identity theft crimes are happening faster and faster then, checking hard copy statements that arrive in the mail once a month is clearly not enough to stop identity theft. Maybe we need to check on our finances more frequently – and Clickatell SMS thinks so too.

Continue reading Not Kiss and Tell but Clickatell: An Effective Tool in Preventing Identity Theft?