In today’s tech-savvy world, can one’s privacy ever truly be protected?
Mass surveillance crushes free expression and free thought, and feels like the utmost tool for privacy violation. And despite the ongoing studies revealing how it breeds fear and conformity — from Google users being less likely to search for certain terms because it might get them into trouble to writers engaging in self-censorship to avoid conflict and unintentional and undeserved interrogation — governments continue to capture virtually all aspects of our lives.
Recently, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg posted a photo celebrating 500 million users on Instagram. In the photo, he is holding a cutout of an Instagram post border while sitting at his desk. But viewers noticed something much more intriguing than Zuckerberg had intended.
As you will notice in the image above, people were pointing out that Zuckerberg’s laptop appears to have a piece of tape covering the microphone and webcam. Is this paranoia, or someone who refuses to turn a blind eye to governmental control? Someone who knows exactly what is going on?
Zuckerberg is making it hard for hackers to break his privacy, and for good reason. In 2014, Whistleblower Edward Snowden admitted that the NSA utilizes a plug-in known as GUMFISH to hijack webcams. They use another one called CAPTIVATEDAUDIENCE to hijack microphones. This allows them to record private conversations.
Snowden & The NSA Leaks
Edward Snowden, an NSA whistleblower who stole thousands of classified documents before leaving the country has made many people aware of the spying that is going on.
Mainstream media networks in North America completely blacked out the interview with Snowden, but that hasn’t stopped the information revealed during the interview from spreading across the planet. You can watch the full interview here. Not only has your entire life been tracked, stored and recorded using multiple techniques, we now know that a “super national intelligence organization” known as the “five eyes” are behind it all, can do whatever they want, and are far beyond the laws of their own country.
They are an international group within the intelligence community that nobody knows anything about.
“The five eyes alliance is sort of an artifact of the post World War II era. Where the anglophone countries of the major powers banded together to sort of cooperate and share the costs of intelligence gathering and infrastructure. What the result of this was over decades and decades was a super national intelligence organization that doesn’t answer to the laws of its own countries. They not only share the information, they share the tools and infrastructure, they work together against joint targets and services.” – Snowden
Now while there may not be someone listening to you 24/7, everything is being recorded and keywords said could initiate certain responses.
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Why the need to spy? Is it obsession over knowing everything that is going on? Is there a deeper agenda? Are we continually being pushed towards a fascist totalitarian state?
Cybercriminals and other trolls have the ability to hijack webcams as well, so of course protecting yourself from that is a good step as well.
So while it might seem odd at first glance that Zuckerberg is so careful about his laptop, he’s merely someone who refuses to let the government invade his privacy… or anyone else.
What do you do to keep more privacy on the internet?
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