Side-Step Snoops with These 9 Counter-Surveillance Tools
There are so many more new ways to spy on a private citizen today than there were a decade ago. And, interestingly enough, there are new counter-surveillance measures that the market has provided as well.
No, we’re not recommending that you actually buy or implement all of the privacy-enhancing options below. But we think it’s more than worth your time to know a bit about them – if for no other reason than to better understand how unscrupulous persons and interests are determined to pry into the lives of others.
For example, it ‘s common to find stories on the news of hidden cameras inappropriately taking videos of us in public bathrooms, hotels, and changing rooms.
Hackers and cyber crooks crave your personal and financial information and will stop at nothing to get it. They plant audio bugs, hack your cell phone, or otherwise gain access to your business and personal conversations. It’s all just as profitable and desirable to them as hacking into your e-mail, because once they have possession of your personal data, they can freely tap your assets while saddling you with their debts.
Counter-surveillance manufacturer Ensure Privacy says,
“Many people believe surveillance devices are myths; however surveillance devices are easily purchased on the open market. Bugging devices and telephone taps are an effective means of stalking [you]. Body-Wires and room transmitters are unethical yet common practice. Professional burglars are using vehicle tracking systems to know when and where you are. Understanding that surveillance devices are real and they can be obtained easily for not a lot of money is why counter-surveillance equipment is necessary.”
With today’s technology, surveillance equipment can be made very small. On the leading edge, military researchers are developing “nano” drones the size of hummingbirds and insects.
The Free Market Provides
Counter-Surveillance Methods to
Reclaim Your Privacy, Anonymity,
and Right to be Left Alone…
Most physical surveillance equipment today transmits wirelessly using radio frequency (RF) signals. You can easily buy counter-surveillance detection equipment that zeroes in on RF signals and exposes the hidden devices.
Nine Tools To Help You Lose a Surveillance Tail
Video Bug Detector
Compact surveillance technology makes it easy to hide a video camera in almost anything: a public bathroom ceiling fan, decoy Coke can, teddy bears, key chain, you name it. If it fits, it records.
Numerous wireless video bug detectors exist on the market. On the low end, a device alerts you that a hidden video camera is near you. On the high-end, equipment pinpoints the exact location of the offending video cameras.
Laser-Based Video Camera Finder
These are typically small handheld devices that fit in a pocket or purse. They send out a laser while you look through the special viewfinder. If the laser detects a hidden video camera lens (even less than 1 mm in size), the lens “glows” through the viewfinder, like cat eyes glowing in car headlights.
These detectors are especially useful for locating cameras at a further distance or cameras that may not be transmitting wirelessly (not sending an RF signal), but instead are recording to an internal DVR.
GPS Monitor Detector
Some GPS monitors send a constant signal and are able to track you on a real-time basis. It has become an ideal weapon of choice for home-invasion specialists. They merely tag the victims’ car and learn their driving habits, as well as arrival and departure times from home and work. Others send periodic signals, perhaps every five or ten minutes, and track your relative position within a window of time and document a record of your whereabouts.
Although some detectors are sensitive enough to find a GPS bug even when it’s turned off, it’s best to allow some time for the GPS detector to work by waiting for a potential signal to leave a hidden GPS tracker.
**Note: GPS Jammers or anti-GPS unit disrupt the GPS signal returning to the satellite. They are illegal in the U.S., even though you can find and probably buy one online from overseas.
Microphone, Wire, Audio Bug Detectors
Microphones can also be shrunk down to size and hidden in almost any place. Someone wanting to record your conversation could conceal a microphone inside a pen or necklace pendant, for instance.
The bug could be transmitting wirelessly in real time, or recording on an internal memory to be picked up and analyzed later.
Audio bug surveillance detectors are an effective countermeasure, picking up RF signals coming out of wireless microphones. However, since RF signals are sent by many types of equipment such as cell phones, cordless phones, microwaves, and Bluetooth appliances, it’s common to get false positives.
In any case, Technical Surveillance Counter Measures (TSCM) professionals say RF bugs need to have a direct line of sight to work properly. So sweeping a room or office with a audio bug surveillance detector does work.
If detection isn’t enough, you may prefer to “ruin” audio recordings by transmitting white noise and ambient sounds that interfere with eavesdroppers and don’t allow them to accurately capture what is being said.
This counter-surveillance tool is also helpful against laser eavesdroppers, which beam a laser at a window in the room you are in, and can listen to your conversation by measuring the vibrations of the glass. This may sound novel for now, but we’ve seen many examples of once-innovative technology becoming totally commonplace. Creating white noise can defeat this surveillance.
According to Brickhouse Security, “Audio jammers generate a random masking sound that desensitizes microphones in the area, rendering them completely unable to record. Audio jammers are effective against any wiretapping device with a microphone as a major component, including tape recorders, RF transmitters, hardwired microphones, and shotgun microphones.“
Compromised Cell-Phone Jammers
This surveillance technology is simply a microphone jammer tailor-made for the mic on your cell phone. Once activated, hackers have less control over your phone and can’t use it as a recording device.
Phone Wiretap Detector
The counter-surveillance technology available to you today is sophisticated. You can buy equipment that analyzes your analog phone lines and detects wiretaps in the phone, the phone jack, outside on the pole, and even in the transformer box!
Order a Professional Sweep
Finally, if you have greater needs or dealing with sensitive information, numerous contractors exist who will complete a professional sweep of your home or business.
You can find a local company online by typing in “Technical Surveillance Counter Measures,” “TSCM,” or “counter surveillance” and your city.
A decent array of counter surveillance tools can easily run into the hundreds of dollars. However, you probably spend several thousand dollars each year on various insurance policies. Counter surveillance tools are essentially a form of insurance to protect your assets and your privacy. As such, they may be worthy of your consideration, based on your individual situation.
Along with these physical surveillance suggestions, remember to have your computer’s counter surveillance tools in good working order, too: firewalls, virus protection, encryption, strong passwords, VPN or proxy server, etc. Using some or all of these security measures will give you a higher level of privacy, anonymity, peace of mind, and freedom compared to the general population.
Attaining a higher degree of privacy requires special knowledge, such as knowing about the options that are presented above. You may not need this knowledge, but perhaps someone you know does!