We are all being tracked now. What should we do about that?

Discussion in 'privacy general' started by lotuseclat79, Apr 29, 2011.

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  1. lotuseclat79

    lotuseclat79 Registered Member

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  2. noone_particular

    noone_particular Registered Member

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    Don't hold your breath waiting for laws that restrict corporate or government tracking. Government and big money business are one and the same. They'll make lots of promises about looking into this or questioning that, but in the end, nothing will change. The "privacy problem" that's in the news today will be forgotten about by the masses in a short time, as soon another item of interest grabs the headlines. Examples: the uproar over government and corporate corruption exposed by Wikileaks and Anonymous has been all but totally forgotten by most people, but those corporations and governments haven't forgotten about those who exposed them. Without having control or influence over mainstream news, coverage of their crimes or their invasion of our lives and privacy is a splash in the pan. Coverage stops and soon it's forgotten. On the other side, they'll keep replaying images of the 9/11 attacks in order to justify todays wars.

    IMO, the only way an individual can avoid most of this tracking is to not use devices and services that have that ability or are connected to it. For myself, I won't buy or use a smart phone. I got along fine without a cell phone for most of my life. There's no reason that I "need" one now. Never needed GPS to find my way from point A to point B before. I won't get lost if I don't use one now. My car doesn't have OnStar or any other GPS system in it, too old for that. I'm not going to buy one that does unless I know for certain that I can completely disable it.

    The one that really sets me off are these places that want to keep tract of everything you do with your money, and some of the underhanded ways they go about it. A local store here has a little card. They have lots of "sale items", available only if you use this card, which of course is tied to your phone number. Use it to save a couple bucks and they have a full list of everything that you bought that day. The cashiers are instructed to ask for it and to push one at you if you don't have one. On more than one occasion, they didn't want to take "I don't want one" for an answer.

    Make a trip to the local big chain lumber yard. Pay cash. The checkout wants your phone number. "For what?" I ask. "It's for warranty in case you need to return something." Thought that's what the sales receipt was for. All I was buying was some lousy 2X4s and a box of screws. What kind of warranty is there on a 2X4? As before, have to argue with them and hold up the line to make it clear that they don't need and aren't getting my phone number.

    I'm inclined to believe that these places sell your number, and that giving it to them or using a card linked to it is twisted into an exception to the "do not call" lists. I'm on those lists and they're still calling.

    Don't want your spending tracked? Use cash and expect resistance. Seen those places and ads that insist on a credit card? They won't take cash. AFAIK, our money still says "this note is legal tender for all debts, public and private". On what legal grounds can they require a credit card and refuse cash, or is it that no one wants the hassle of challenging them on this policy?

    Then there's the interest all of us here have in common, our computers and the internet. Short of using Tor or similar, there isn't much we can do to really stop the tracking. We can use a remote proxy and make it harder. We can stop the extra connections, kill nosy scripts and browser addons, and block/eliminate the tracking data stored on our PCs. This is a constant tradeoff between between usability and convenience vs privacy and security. We, as individuals and a group, are on our own here. There will be no real help from government or agencies that create or enforce rules or claim to "look out for us". They are a large part of the problem.

    Trackability and the loss of privacy are directly liked to planned obsolescense, starting when you first activate the operating system, not to mention having to repeatedly verify that you haven't pirated it. The newer the OS, the worse it gets, not just the anti-piracy, but the sheer number of places and ways it can store tracking data. It's hard to continually defend your privacy when the OS vendor is literally an adversary pretending to be otherwise. If you want an OS that's an ally for defending your privacy, you have 2 choices, each of which has problems of their own.
    1, Use an Open Source operating system.
    2, Use and earlier, unsupported version of the closed source system, upgrade it unofficially, and be prepared to provide your own support.

    The only thing that could possibly change things on a national or global scale is for the majority of people to stand up and say "We've had enough of this." That isn't going to happen for many reasons. We as individuals or a group do not have any way of putting this in front of the majority of people in a way that would make them open their eyes. You can also be sure that the "Internet kill switch" that was in the news for a short time is being implemented to kill just this sort of thing. Even if we could reach the majority of people, they're more interested in their fantasy worlds (aka reality TV) than the real world. They're more concerned about who will be "kicked off of the island next" than who we're going to war with in the real world.
     
  3. dw426

    dw426 Registered Member

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    @Noone: So glad I'm not alone on this forum. Everything you said was dead on accurate. Welcome to the new world folks, you won't be calling people whackjobs and conspiracy nuts much longer.
     
  4. cm1971

    cm1971 Registered Member

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    +1
    There is certainly a dark side to technology.
     
  5. noone_particular

    noone_particular Registered Member

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    It's been like this for much longer than most people realize. As soon as employers figured out that they could toy with your livelihood as they pleased, an individuals security and freedom disappeared. Shortly after WWII, individuals had to start "proving" that they weren't communists, in reality a complete impossibility. How do you prove a negative? Substitute "terrorist" for "communist" and you have where we are today. The only real difference is that now we have to deal with the technology that enables them to monitor almost every aspect of our lives, most of which centers around computer technology.
    The solution would be so simple if the technology itself was the problem. Unfortunately, it's the corrupt, greedy, and power hungry people behind the technology that are the problem. Unfortunately, they're out of our reach. Combine control of that technology with the ability to take over governments and purchase the creation of laws that serve your purposes at the expense of everone else and you become nearly untouchable.

    I don't see any realistic way to openly resist this merger of big money and government without making yourself an easy target. Nothing short of a public uprising will change this, and the mechanisms to detect this and stop it before it gets started are already in place. Modern people are too naive, too distracted, and too dependent on this controlling system to ever stand up to it. The average person in a developed nation is literally enslaved to their paychecks, and as a result, to their employer, too much so to even consider doing anything that will jeopardize their income. Most would be in dire straights if they miss 2 checks, much of which goes towards paying for that junk that tracks them or distracts them from the reality that enslaves them. For all of our alleged skills and knowledge, most could never survive by their own means, something you would have to be able to do before you could stand up to the system.
    HOW IN THE WORLD DO PEOPLE HAVE THE GALL TO CALL THIS FREEDOM? This is what we want to give to the rest of the world, the opportunity to be enslaved by big money and to have every aspect of your life monitored? I see no way to stop this merger of corporation and government, or even slow it down to any degree without putting a big target on yourself and your family. Unfortunately, the best we can do is to gradually drop off of the radar screen by not buying/using the modern tracking toys, not using plastic money, getting out of debt (living within your means and not becoming enslaved to a paycheck) and learning to provide for yourself. Much easier said than done. It requires a lot of self discipline, more than most people have. Then hope that the system overlooks you, and pray that it collapses under its own weight.

    No, this is not a strictly computer topic. Computers in all forms play a central role, but this is so much bigger than that. This control and monitoring extends to every aspect of our lives in ways most people can't begin to imagine, up to and including the food we eat. Think this an exaggeration? Take a look at the seeds for our food. Almost all are hybrids or genetically engineered. Seed saved from these won't be true to their parent variety and in many cases will be sterile. Old fashioned open pollinated seeds, the kind that have kept humanity and all other animals alive since the beginning of time have largely disappeared from seed catalogs. There's no more effective way to control people than to be in control of the food supply. All but a small percentage of the "free worlds" seed supply is under big moneys control. Now they're claiming "intellectual property' and trying to patent life itself, and this corrupt system will let them do it. As for the original question, "What should we do about that?", the only answer I have is open your eyes and see how big and complete this tracking/monitoring/controlling system is and how long it's been being built and implemented. Then as much as you can, quietly and gradually break away from it without calling attention to yourself. Join forces with like minded people. If you're going to use technology (like we computer addicts could ever give them up) make sure that you are in control of those devices, that you understand them and how they work (for and against you) and that you have the final say over what happens on them.
     
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2011
  6. CloneRanger

    CloneRanger Registered Member

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    That's why it has to all go bang ! And it will, before 2012 is over.

    Indeed ! GMO has NOT been "proved" to be harmless, to people and/or other living things. In fact there is enough evidence out there already that it Does harm :thumbd: So you might think & expect any responsible goverment etc to ban it. Instead on it goes, with big pharma continuing to finance polititions & their ilk ::mad:
     
  7. Baserk

    Baserk Registered Member

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    While taking my chances in going OT, hasn't genetical enhancement of seeds been done for centuries?

    Patent claims and 'intellectual property' on 'food for the billions', is a different matter but I don't understand why some folks get all nervous when seeds are enhanced in a laboratory instead of 'in the field' as has been done throughout history.

    I think it's likely, 2nd/3rd world countries will simply say Fffffuuuu, if Monsanto and the lot will put (too much) strain on food supplies.
    Like has been done with pharmaceutical companies who developed medicines against HIV.
    (I understand the whole issue is in defining "(too much) strain").

    About the OP's linked article, pfff, the masses seem not to care so much and a large part of those who do, seem to overreact.
    I guess I'm somewhere in the middle, I support organizations like EFF and likewise privacy-awareness groups.
    Information for the masses is needed, like the impact of the recent dicovery of IPhones location database and/or TomTom's selling of anonymized data to third parties who sold it to the police.
    So my simpleton answer would be; help to inform the masses.
     
  8. Cudni

    Cudni Global Moderator

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    Information is the key and more we know less we are going to believe everything that we are told. Thanks for your participation as we are closing this thread before it becomes more OT
     
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