The Phaserl


A Random Walk Through The Risks of Silicon Valley

by epaminondas, Survival Blog:

As a technology executive who has worked extensively with most of the big, high-tech firms (Microsoft, Google, Verizon, Dell, Qualcomm, and more), I thought that it could be helpful to share a perspective on the general role of technology on prepper thinking and planning. This readership is much more sophisticated than most, but the hard fact is that most of us cannot live an independent, off-grid lifestyle for a variety of reasons. Technology is the great enabler and force multiplier that can make it much easier to work remotely, maintain close contact with family and friends while benefiting from the vast knowledge of the Internet.

The danger zone here is around the data. Silicon Valley companies are not deliberately trying to repress freedom. They are providing technologies to drive new solutions and profits that can often have the unwanted side effect of providing Big Brother an unprecedented tool for compromising freedom. A big part of the problem is that companies never think (or care) about the freedom impact.

Here is how I view the risk/reward of certain technologies and current events in technology:

Mobile Phones

The network needs to know who and where you are to deliver a call, just as a mailman needs to have your name and address to deliver a letter. If you are uncomfortable with this, use a VoIP account for your telephone and access it from any browser (using a VPN) to check voice mail. While Blackberry devices have the highest security of any mass market phone, the company is dying and the U.S. government can still access anything that they want. In about five years, 5G technology will be here and it will include a direct handset-to-handset ability that can keep some communications off of the main network. I would consider a Blackberry for secure third world messaging. Most countries outside of the big ones cannot crack the encryption, and some (India) have mandated a back door in return for market access. One thing to keep in mind is that location technology is now embedded in much more than just phones and cars. A GPS module with antenna is now smaller than 17mm by 17mm and can be put into almost any electronics.

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