Creeping Fascism, Part 4: Preserving Privacy

By: John Rubino | Tue, Jun 18, 2013
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Every day, it seems, there's another story about the web of surveillance that's being woven around us by governments and telecom firms and hackers. Between the webcams and DVRs that can be activated remotely to watch us at our desks or in front of our TVs, the warrantless wiretaps that vacuum up millions of phone calls and emails and the data dumps from Facebook and Google into government storage facilities for later mining, the 4th Amendment's freedom from "unreasonable search and seizure" looks like a relic from the days of black-and-white movies.

But this technological arms race has two sides. For every insecure browser or email service, there are several that are, at least so far, beyond the reach of government and corporate spies. A good place to start figuring out how to use them is, which highlights services like DoNotTrackMe, a blocker of "third-party trackers", and DuckDuckGo, an anonymous search engine.

Fix Tracking

PRISM Breakis a more extensive site that lists free anti-surveillance tools by category, i.e, browser, search engine, email service, etc.

Also of possible interest is RetroShare, an "Open Source cross-platform, Friend-2-Friend and secure decentralized communication platform. It lets you to securely chat and share files with your friends and family, using a web-of-trust to authenticate peers and OpenSSL to encrypt all communication. RetroShare provides file sharing, chat, messages, forums and channels..."

And this TED talk by Gary Kovacs, titled Tracking the Trackers, highlights a very cool piece of technology.

I can't vouch for any of this yet but will be trying some of the services listed here over the next few months. More about them then.



John Rubino

Author: John Rubino

John Rubino

John Rubino

John Rubino edits and has authored or co-authored five books, including The Money Bubble: What To Do Before It Pops, Clean Money: Picking Winners in the Green Tech Boom, The Collapse of the Dollar and How to Profit From It, and How to Profit from the Coming Real Estate Bust. After earning a Finance MBA from New York University, he spent the 1980s on Wall Street, as a currency trader, equity analyst and junk bond analyst. During the 1990s he was a featured columnist with and a frequent contributor to Individual Investor, Online Investor, and Consumers Digest, among many other publications. He now writes for CFA Magazine.

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