|It should be clear by now that Big Government's domestic surveillance policies under Presidents Bill Clinton and George Bush are being furthered expanded by Mr. Obama.|
May 5th, 2011
It should be clear by now that Big Government's domestic surveillance policies under Presidents Bill Clinton and George Bush are being furthered expanded by Mr. Obama. Transparency, it seems, had nothing to do with making government more visible. It did, however, have everything to do with making your like more transparent.
Before we itemize the many ways in which you're being watch, surveyed, monitored and aggregated, this latest report by Alex Thomas of The Intel Hub reiterates, yet again, that digital surveillance capabilities are not just isolated to intelligence agencies:
A lawsuit filed on Tuesday alleges that Aaron’s, a huge furniture rent to buy company, used software and a special device on their computers that enabled them to spy on PC renters.While we often hear protests from privacy advocates about government intrusion into the lives of Americans, what many fail to understand is that it's not just the government. Private businesses like Aaron's, as well as large corporate conglomerates, are themselves engaging in the surveillance of Americans with the development of products and services specifically for this purpose – and often without the consent of their customers, or, through terms of services agreements that include dozens of pages of unintelligible fine print.
According to the lawsuit, the company is able to track keystrokes and snap webcam pictures in the home of their customers.
Brian and Crystal Byrd, the couple who filed the lawsuit, claim that they were never told about these intrusive spying measures.
While computer privacy experts agree that Aaron’s has the right to install devices that enable them to shut down the computers remotely, customers must be told that they are being monitored.
The couple only found out about the spying after an Aaron’s employee showed them a picture of Brian Byrd that was taken remotely while the Byrds were in their home.
“After they showed us the picture, I, of course, felt violated,” Crystal Byrd said in an interview Monday. “There are many times I sat in front of that computer with barely nothing on. So I didn’t know if they had taken lots of pictures of us or what,” reported the Wyoming Tribune.
Brian Byrd also reported that he thinks the picture was shown to him in order to intimidate him into an easy repossession.
Source: The Intel Hub
As modern technology continues to advance at breakneck speeds, just as the merger of the corporations and the state are occurring within political circles, so to are they becoming more prevalent in the intelligence sphere.
Fellow Americans, everything you do is being monitored.
With respect to the government, it's not by choice. However, when dealing with private businesses, we have readily accepted our own fate by accepting into our lives the very technologies that make it all possible.
- What You Do Online Is No Secret: As you sit in the perceived privacy of your own home reading this article, a log of your surfing habits and preferred reading or video viewing subjects is being created. Your IP address, that unique identifier the points specifically to the broadband line connected to your home modem, is time stamped with every web site you visit. Everything you watch at video web sites, everything you download online, and even your search queries are logged. You don't even have to have an account with a major online service provider – your IP is sufficient – but that user account you create is used to further improve your personal profile and characteristics.
- We can see you. We can hear you. Not only are your actions logged, but if you were deemed a person of interest for whatever reason, that little camera staring back at you on top of your monitor or that microphone built directly into your PC can be flipped on for remote surveillance at any time. While Aaron's furniture or the local school district may need to install special software to remotely view what you're doing in your bedroom, public sector intelligence groups operating on equipment that is technologically advanced compared to the consumer products of today is perfectly capable of entering your ‘secure' home network and turning on those video and audio features – and you'd have absolutely no clue it's going on.
- Your cell phone is a mobile monitoring device. Much like your computer, all modern day cell phones come with cameras. And they all have a microphone. It is no secret that law enforcement agencies have the ability to easily tap these devices and listen and watch anything that's going on. This capability is essentially hard-wired right into the phone. In fact, it has been reported that even if your cell phone is turned completely off, the microphone can still be remotely activated. The only known solution is to remove the battery if you want to ensure complete privacy. Sounds pretty far-fetched doesn't it? Up until two weeks, so did the notion that Apple and Android phones could track and log everywhere you go. We now know that this is exactly what's happening, and literally, every movement you make is tracked within inches of your location. A log of everywhere you have been has been logged if your cell phone was in your pocket.