By The Coach, Contributing Editor
In a previous article that I wrote for M.S.O. titled, “Unlimited Access to Communications of Every American”, I wrote about how the U. S. House of Representatives and the U. S. Senate voted and passed a bill that legalized the N. S. A. to listen to and capture ALL electronic communications foreign and domestic. The response to this article was so good; I thought I would write another article exposing just how secure you are from electronic surveillance.
I found an article titled, “NSA reports detail decade’s worth of privacy violations”, see reference # 1 below. In that article it states that the “National Security Agency has quietly released more than a decade of reports detailing surveillance activities that potentially violated U.S. citizens’ privacy rights.” The report list the N. S. A.’s listening activity from 2001 to 2013 that, according to the N.S.A., might be illegal.
No, the N.S.A. did not submit this report because they wanted to clear the conscious, the American Civil Liberties Union submitted a Freedom of Information Act to obtain the information. However, even with that request, the information was highly censored by the N.S.A. before they released it.
In the above mentioned document it states, an NSA analyst “searched her spouse’s personal telephone directory without his knowledge to obtain names and telephone numbers for targeting.” There are several other instances, such as the before mentioned listed, in the article.
However, the N.S.A. said, in the article, that they did a good job at policeing themselves. You know, the fox guarding the hen house!
Never letting the American voting public down, in November of 2014, the U. S. Senate failed to pass legislation that would have ended the N.S.A.’s phone recording program on United States Citizens.
I then started to conduct some very basic research into this electronic surveillance of United States Citizens. I must state here that I am no electronics or computer tech. I also found out how ignorant I really was about the whole topic of current electronic spying.
I found an article titled, “Is the Government Spying On You Through Your Own Computer’s Webcam Or Microphone?” See reference # 2 below.
That article states that, “if you are near your smart phone – the NSA or private parties could remotely activate your microphone and camera and spy on you.” But the article goes on to say, “the NSA built backdoors into the world’s most popular software program – Microsoft Windows – by 1999.” It is believed that other computer programs have been “Back Doored” by the N.S.A. also.
The article continues to say that, “Reuters documented last year that the U.S. and Israeli governments can remotely turn on a computer’s microphone”. The virus that is used to do this is named, “Flame”. It is stated in the article that “Flame” can gather data files, remotely change settings on computers, turn on PC microphones to record conversations, take screen shots and log instant messaging chats.”
Then I read something that really disturbed me, it states that “as documented by Microsoft, Ars Technica, CNET, the Register, Sydney Morning Herald, AP and many other sources – private parties can turn on your computer’s microphone and camera as well.” Do you have the feeling that you may be under surveillance yet?
Then I learned that the same type of controls can be used on your phone, OnStar type system or other car microphone, Xbox, and other
digital recording devices.
I then continued to do a little more research and found that the above was very true. I found that for as little as $68.00 a month, a company called “FlexiSPY” will rent you an electronic spy program. I am sure there are other companies that will do the same thing for you. “FlexiSPY” states that their program will allow you to spy on the following:
• Call Records
• Address Book
• Web History
• Application Usage
• Instant Messages
And MUCH, MUCH more!
BUT, is it legal for you to use the above software? I do not know. Be careful! Just because your government can do something does not make it legal for you to do it! I am NOT recommending that you use such a service. Before spending money on such a service, you may want to check with your attorney!
If a private company will rent you the program to do all of the above, just think what the N.S.A.’s is capable of doing!
DO NOT trust any of your electronic devices that have a send or receive capabilities on it, even if they are turned off. Be careful about even connecting your TV set or gaming system to the internet! Even with these systems turned off, with the right program someone can turn on your camera and/or microphone on your smart phone or computer and watch and listen to everything within range of those devices.
The police tell you your “Miranda” rights when you are arrested. I am sure you know them from TV better than I do; you have the right to remain silent; anything you say may be used against you in a court of law, etc. It appears they do NOT need to tell you when they hijack your electronic communications. Things that you say in confidence can now be used against you without a warrant.
Be careful out there my friends! Things are NOT the same as when we were growing up in a much simpler time.
NOTE: I DO NOT receive ANY compensation, of ANY kind, from ANY company, for mentioning ANY product, named in ANY of my articles.
“NSA reports detail decade’s worth of privacy violations”
“Is the Government Spying On You Through Your Own Computer’s Webcam Or Microphone?”
“Who then is free? The wise man who can govern himself”.
(BC 65-8) Latin lyric poet.