Google is watching even closer than we thought

 

 

Check out this link to see how far Google has come with their ability to track people's every move. They are even taking barometric pressure readings at every location one goes throughout the day!

And yes, they can access your camera and microphone from certain sites you visit. In many cases, the site default is to enable one's microphone and camera, unless the site is instructed not to do so.

For those out there who still care about their privacy, be advised.

I have never, and would never sign up for anything Google.

Comments

George N Romey Added Mar 15, 2018 - 3:34pm
When I type on my IPhone suddenly there are words put there that I don't intend to use, forcing me to erase and put in what I want.  I find this happens when I post on WB.  And strangely the "suggested words" are very big brother approved.
Stone-Eater Added Mar 15, 2018 - 3:40pm
Bill
 
Thanks for the warning - I know. Even when you're dumbphone is OFF, they can track you. And when it's on, it constantly sends information stored in your phone to servers without you knowing it - even at idle at night.
 
USB sticks have hard-coded open ports which are only traceable with special programs, so-called port sniffers, and these you won't find usable for Windows applications.
 
If anyone of you has the time and patience to really check out what can be done - take an older desktop PC with 2 gigs of RAM and install Kali Linux.
 
That gives you a rough idea :-)
Stone-Eater Added Mar 15, 2018 - 3:45pm
....but it's only scratching the surface. Secret service tools have to match special hardware you won't find in stores. They can go as far as locating your phone at a 1 m diameter realtime, no matter if you have location on or off. They can read your IMEI, your configuration, your contacts, mails, on PC's your MAC address (don't ever think that a IP hiding service is useful !).
 
Best think is being NOT digital at all. And beware of your (new) television. It watches you as well. Soon your fridge will too LOL
Stone-Eater Added Mar 15, 2018 - 3:48pm
George
 
You have auto-correct switched on. Switch it off.
Stone-Eater Added Mar 15, 2018 - 3:51pm
BTW George
 
Why the hell do you use an iShit ? You pay hundreds of dollars for a design, because the operating system is open source !
 
No PC is easier to hack than an iWhatever. Believe me LOL
Bill H. Added Mar 15, 2018 - 3:53pm
 
George - I have heard similar reports from IPhone users. Not sure why that happens.
SEF - Yes, there was a day when geolocation services were only allowed to be used by emergency services and police. Now it is available to just about anyone, such as used by parents who track their kids every move. I believe many work with both GPS and cell tower triangulation techniques. Of course, most are aware that if you disable geolocation services on your phone, it is never really totally disabled.
opher goodwin Added Mar 15, 2018 - 3:56pm
Who the hell processes all of this vast amount of information?
George N Romey Added Mar 15, 2018 - 3:57pm
If they want to track me, fine. NoW I think our government is criminal. Maybe men in a black sedan will grab me and send me to “re-education” camp.
Bill H. Added Mar 15, 2018 - 3:57pm
 
So we've gone from spellcheck to grammar correct?
Next it will be politi-correct to make sure your communication is delivered in the most proper tone and wording of your platform of choice.
Flying Junior Added Mar 15, 2018 - 3:57pm
My fucking phone has a little blue light that comes on to record sound every time I cough or say one word.  Sometimes a loud click activates the damn thing.  I have another app that asks me if I want to rate every store or restaurant.  The worst yet was it asked me to take photos of my neighbor's house to, "be a part of Googol Maps!"  The idea was that they were basically slandering this man for running a business out of his home even though in truth he parks his heavy trucks in a commercial yard.
 
I'm going to have to take it back to Verizon to see if someone will help me scrub these apps.  They just laugh at me when I attempt to uninstall them.
opher goodwin Added Mar 15, 2018 - 4:06pm
Perhaps its the aps we don't know about that we should worry about most?
Stone-Eater Added Mar 15, 2018 - 4:06pm
George
 
If they want to track me, fine.
 
That's what people say here too. You just wait for the day they stand on your door and arrest you for an occasional comment on whatever media being taxed racist or anti-whatever....
Stone-Eater Added Mar 15, 2018 - 4:08pm
Oph
 
It's a lot of information, sure. But algorithms get refined, and they can not only filter keywords but also phrases which talk AROUND these keywords. You'd be astounded...
Stone-Eater Added Mar 15, 2018 - 4:10pm
Guys...
 
When you install an app, it lists you the access it wants on your phone. And most want ALL. So don't install it. You don't buy meds without reading the paper that explains side-effects ? If you do - your fault :-)
Stone-Eater Added Mar 15, 2018 - 4:14pm
FJ
 
Save your contacts on the computer and reset to factory settings. It's the only way to get rid of all and the traces you left on the phone. But I know that there's a mechanism on some phones that send all the data to the servers before (while) the phone is reset.
 
As I said: You can never be completely sure except when you stop all digital stuff. Sad but true.
Stone-Eater Added Mar 15, 2018 - 4:16pm
BTW: I'm talking Android (Samsung for example) here, not iCrap, just to make it clear.
Ian Thorpe Added Mar 15, 2018 - 5:28pm
This is easy, get a pre - pay burner, it's all the phone you need. Turn off location sensor if you use a windows laptop, disable the mic and camera, do not use anything Google and go for a non tracking search engine. Not 100% but it makes life difficult for the cyberspies.
Join the awkward bastards club - we have great parties, Google execs are disembowelled and spit roasted.
Bill H. Added Mar 15, 2018 - 5:44pm
 
FJ - If your phone is responding every time you cough, you will probably soon find an excess of advertisements for cough remedies on both your TV and virtually every web page you go to. Not to mention the increase in your health insurance premium if it may be determined that you have some type of lung condition.
I have mentioned many times out here about what some of these sneaky apps are actually designed for. If you actually think WAZE was made to make your driving more convenient, think again (check your auto insurance premium on your next bill if you happen to run a few red lights un-noticed).
If you think the DNA testing sites were really made to help you find a lost relative, don't be surprised if you begin receiving advertisements from pharma companies that "surprisingly" are portraying drugs that match a medical condition you have (or didn't know you had).
If you think Pokémon GO was intended to be just a game, it not only lets loads of companies know exactly where you are, but it also lets them know what other apps you have on your phone. It was designed to collect more information from very young users.
Read the user agreements TOTALLY before you sign on! Companies know most people don't and are relying on this fact to not only learn as much as possible about you, but to continue pushing the boundaries of privacy to the point of non-existence. As many are aware, they are very successful, now to the point than many people either totally don't care, or even forgot that the right of privacy ever existed.
Bill H. Added Mar 15, 2018 - 5:49pm
Good comment, Ian!
I was using an old early '90s Nokia phone without a GPS up until about 2 years ago when they disabled the network that supported it.
TexasLynn Added Mar 15, 2018 - 5:55pm
The only problem with your article (and it was spot on) is that it's too specific. Apple, and Microsoft, and Amazon, and Facebook, and Twitter etc... are no better. It's like trying to find someone to deal with in the Middle-East. There are no good guys.
 
Enron taught me to look at whatever a corporation tells you and understand that they are doing the exact opposite. Google's corporate moto/(code of conduct) used to be "Don’t Be Evil". When Alphabet took over they changed it to "[We] should do the right thing — follow the law, act honorably, and treat each other with respect."
 
Man! I feel better already!
Bill H. Added Mar 15, 2018 - 6:53pm
 
Your absolutely right, Lynn.
Many others are at it too. Facebook and Google have historically been the testing beds for this stuff, as they have many users who just don't care and will try anything.
 
James Travil Added Mar 15, 2018 - 7:06pm
Good article Mr. H. Whenever I use my phone (a Samsung Galaxy device) I just pretend I'm talking to an FBI agent and only share what I would with said individual. Nothing too personal or private. I know I'm being watched.
 
Keep in mind that certain companies have their own departments to spy on their customers (AT&T and Verizon do). 
 
As for the grammar correction I think it's a hoot sometimes. Like when I was typing out "Jeff Sessions is a disgrace to the office" and my phone suggested "Jeff Sessions is a disgrace to the human species" LMAO, can't argue with that!
ChristianRepublic Added Mar 15, 2018 - 7:23pm
George, that's auto-fill, your phone is "guessing" what you're going to say and types it for you. You can turn it off in Settings.
Dino Manalis Added Mar 15, 2018 - 7:24pm
Google spies on you, be careful!
Bill H. Added Mar 15, 2018 - 7:47pm
James - Were probably all talking to an FBI or CIA robo-agent at all times, who is nothing more than a server in a hardened facility somewhere.
Dino - Your certainly correct! I have always had the suspicion that you might be an electronic robo-agent in training many times, or possibly a test bed on WB for IBM's Watson.
CR - I hope it doesn't get so good at guessing that it just takes care of the entire paragraph or article for you. Pretty soon we will be able to post on WB just by thinking.
opher goodwin Added Mar 15, 2018 - 8:15pm
Bill - I'm being monitored on my computer right now while I'm communicating with you!
Michael B. Added Mar 15, 2018 - 10:14pm
Being the weirdo and misfit that I have always been and will always be, I still don't have a cell phone of any sort. If the fucks want to watch me, they're in for a pretty boring show, however, it's one of those myriad things that continues to punch increasingly gaping holes in the hull of our already (seemingly) sinking republic, and not just the USA. On the flip side, sites like Wikileaks and others occasionally inform us common rabble on what the ruling classes are up and down to. There's what's going on, and then, there's what's REALLY going on.
Bill H. Added Mar 15, 2018 - 10:28pm
Opher -
Our new "Internet Privacy" rules here in the US allow ISP's to monitor every keystroke and email between your house and the web interface.
I see that you use Colgate toothpaste and walk an average of 2.3 miles a day.
 
Good one Michael-
I won't be long before a chip outperforms our brains. We can then be born and have the chip immediately activated, so we won't have to attend school. Of course, by then we will no longer need social lives, as that would be totally illogical.
The key point here will be that the chip must have Bluetooth connectivity to the internet at all times.
Resistance is futile!
Michael B. Added Mar 15, 2018 - 10:52pm
Bill, you're right! "Resistance is futile." Why do I keep fighting, lol.
 
I was talking to someone the other day about how these days, military personnel are allowed to serve with prosthetic limbs, whereas in my day, most people were medically separated from the service if they lost a whole or partial finger or toe. It brought up images of sci-fi creatures like Robocop and, of course, the Terminator, which are becoming increasingly more in the realm of reality.
 
One of my favorite old Star Trek episodes is called, "I, Mudd." Kirk and the usual gang are sucked into a world controlled by hyper-logical androids (not surprisingly, Spock is the only one who they think is their binary-brained version of "cool"). In the end, the androids are reduced to smoking anthropomorphic hulks by the one and only performance of Theater of the Absurd on Star Trek that I know of, lol.
Bill H. Added Mar 16, 2018 - 12:03am
Michael-
Yes, we are slowly becoming digital versions of what was once ourselves. Our thoughts and feelings are being digitized, analyzed, compromised, sanitized, and reconfigured to be given back to us in a way that suits the machine. It may very well come to the point that when we no longer work correctly with the algorithm, we become a commodity for Soylent Green.
2022 is less than 4 years away.
Bill H. Added Mar 16, 2018 - 12:12am
 
Good deal, Jim!
I got that video this morning from an I.T. guy that I used to work with years ago who is now a nationally known cybersecurity person (no names mentioned). We keep in touch and I learn much from him.
In fact, one of the reasons I decided to retire early was due to my objections to the companies local office's decision to implement what I considered less than ethical eavesdropping on company personnel. This is what initially spurred my concerns in this area.
 
Lots of people keep their phones in a copper box and only open it when they want to make a call or check their messages.
Actually, any metal box will do.
George N Romey Added Mar 16, 2018 - 8:19am
If they want to watch me be my guest. I don’t FB and I think LI is a swamp of bullshitters. Most decent companies have stopped using LI to recruit (using Indeed instead) because they know it’s all fluff and bs.
 
I wouldn’t mind escaping to Russia where I probably would live like a king in exile.
Jeff Jackson Added Mar 16, 2018 - 8:58am
Whenever they ask me for "voluntary" information, I feed them nothing but crap. On the internet, as on mailing lists (which I started doing decades ago) I have several different names. Take the battery out of your phone when not using it. Make sure that you have "disposable" identities. The information age needs a lot of disinformation, and they have a lot of it  from me.
opher goodwin Added Mar 16, 2018 - 9:00am
Jeff - that's the same thing a lot of people do on WB.
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Mar 16, 2018 - 10:08am
Google is Big Brother in fact. Our conduct can be proscribed by such a system. This becomes the Thought Police with teeth. 
George N Romey Added Mar 16, 2018 - 10:32am
Another company I applied to wanted me to "share" my FB profile.  I declined stating that I do not use FB and consider most of it a waste of time.  I still got a first interview next week although I get the feeling this is a company that is very "social media" controlled.
Bill H. Added Mar 16, 2018 - 10:59am
 
When I was hiring people, our HR department began requiring FB logins for applicants. I was also told by an HR person that if an applicant told them that they didn't have a FB profile (or if HR wanted to snoop on an existing employee) that they would utilize a background investigation firm that was able to access anyone's FB or other social media without the need for a password, using a "back door".
rycK - If you want to use a safe search engine that does not capture your information, use either StartPage (which is actually a Google proxy), or DuckDuckGo.
 
Pardero Added Mar 16, 2018 - 2:27pm
Bill H.
Good recommendations on search engines. Brave browser is highly thought of by some.
I disagree on your admonition against DNA research. It could be that we need additional safeguards, but I would hate to see the baby get thrown out with the bathwater.
Bill H. Added Mar 16, 2018 - 4:03pm
Pardero - I have nothing against DNA research, but when so-called "ancestry" sites are able to sell your DNA results to other entities simply by referring to them as "affiliates", that is where I become concerned. Many user agreements for these "services" are pretty open-ended, and people must not assume that they have any rights.
Pardero Added Mar 16, 2018 - 5:15pm
Bill H.
I am grateful for that cautionary information. I would hope that some true privacy advertising would give a marketing advantage in a free market. Alternatively, we may need some legislation to limit sharing of information. 
I was surprised and gratified by the success against telemarketers. Maybe something for these newer issues is far overdue.
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Mar 16, 2018 - 5:28pm
 
Given the vast mountain of information about us contained in Google, the prediction is that someone would take advantage of this for financial or political reasons. Should we be surprised??
 
I think not. 
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Mar 16, 2018 - 5:28pm
Bill H
 
Thanx, will look at those..........
Bill H. Added Mar 16, 2018 - 8:44pm
Pardero - I used to get blasted by telemarketers several years ago, but I signed up for the NOMOROBO service (which is free), and it has been successful at eliminating 98% of telemarketer calls. Once in a while one will slip thru. I also use a program called VZ Enhanced 56K that works with a cheap 56K modem and allows me to log received and blocked calls on my computer, along with allowing call blocking on it's own using either the number or the CID field, along with some other neat features. FYI - Windows will alert you that this program is "untested" or has a virus, which is total bullshit. If you decide to try it, ignore all of the warning messages you will get. It was written by a good friend of mine, and he refuses to pay Microsoft the fees that they want for testing and approving his program.
 
rycK!
Google has already determined users political leanings and makes matters worse by tailoring search results and narrowing views as a byproduct. Check out this TED talk on filter bubbles. 
Pardero Added Mar 16, 2018 - 8:54pm
Bill H.
Thanks!
Sam Nowaczynski Added Mar 17, 2018 - 4:03am
As Google and many other tech companies have proven, we value their products and services.  By all means, if you’re concerned about privacy you can turn off some features or not walk around with a device that has a camera and microphone.  As for me, I don’t think anyone but I care about the barometric pressure of the places I visit.  The fact Google can provide that information might be helpful to me and is a reason to use Google and not one of their competitors. 
 
So what are you afraid of Google doing with all this information?
 
Is Apple a company we shouldn't do business with either?
Bill H. Added Mar 17, 2018 - 11:41am
Sam - If a person decides that they want to allow all of their personal information to be stored on a server, sold to anyone who wants it, or used to establish a profile of the person, then that is their decision, but they need to be aware of where this info goes and how it is used.
Myself, if I decide that I don't want any of my personal information siphoned, stored, and distributed to the world, then I should not only have the ability to accomplish this, but be made aware of all and every attempt to collect this information. These days, it all seems to be done clandestinely with at best, misleading and many times false user agreements, or none at all. With the loss of Internet Privacy Rules, ISP's are now able to siphon data at the IP address level and sell it to there "affiliates" without any need for permission from the customer.
Bill H. Added Mar 17, 2018 - 3:19pm
 
This issue also goes for other forms of customer data tapping, such as supermarket "loyalty" cards. Data on what you purchase is valuable to advertisers, along with entities like health insurance companies, who would most likely love to know what your diet is, how much alcohol you consume, and your tobacco use.
Pardero Added Mar 17, 2018 - 8:22pm
Bill H.
It seems as though we would have the power to pass laws drastically restricting the collection of data. I believe there is a consensus. Is lobbying stopping any movement or people aren't upset enough?
wsucram15 Added Mar 17, 2018 - 8:39pm
BillH..we have been talking about this on here for a long time.  There is a device that you can use to access ANYONES phone, turn it on both via voice and camera.
Your computer is easily accessed, I have seen that done remotely.  Crazy stuff people can do..
So they invent things to stop it and here we are.  Programs to track the programs which in turn track us.
like I said, a phone is a tracking device, I dont even call them phones.
As far as what you purchase..Amazon started that marketing model.
I will tell my daughter about the program to eliminate the telemarker calls.
 
Thanks
Bill H. Added Mar 17, 2018 - 9:54pm
Pardero - There is lots of money being made selling people's personal info. This is exactly why the internet privacy rules were overturned recently. Since the ISP's can now mine data at virtually the keystroke level, you can be assured that there is tons of money to be made. Now we have "The Cloud" which was most likely conceived on how to store all of this data to create "mega profiles" on individuals, along with being able to quickly route the data to provide quick and easy distribution to all of the "affiliates" who pay dearly for it.
Jeanne - Yes, lots of clandestine software out there made to do just that. I heard somewhere that many FB users were apparently caught off-guard when they found that their phone cameras and audio could be enabled by their FB "friends" easily via a menu item. Apparently FB forgot to tell their customers that they needed to update their security settings after they did an upgrade that allowed this feature.
One favorite phone scam is the guy who says he is calling from "Microsoft Technical Services" to advise you that your computer has a virus and ask you to connect to a website to clean it out. The end result is usually the encryption of your disk drive (or drives) and asking for a stiff fee to unencrypt the drive. Sometimes this evens results in a total copying of your drive information if the affected computer is left on for an extended period of time.
xanadu Added Mar 18, 2018 - 12:46am
It's truly frightening. Say what you will about Alex Jones, but he called this years ago. He was way ahead of the curve on this one.
xanadu Added Mar 18, 2018 - 12:52am
"Even when you're dumbphone is OFF, they can track you."
 
It's fucking scary dude. We're in a total surveillance state.
Thomas Napers Added Mar 18, 2018 - 3:22am
If the concern is with your private information being sold, that would be a reason to use Google.  After all, Google’s value is based on all sorts of things unrelated to the sale of your private information.  Should word ever get out that your information was used by Google in an illegal or improper manner, it would kill its business.  My fear lies with those Podunk websites whose only purpose is to get your data so that it can be sold. 
Doug Plumb Added Mar 18, 2018 - 9:40am
They aren't listening, they are just saving everything for your trial.
Bill H. Added Mar 18, 2018 - 11:22am
Thomas - I suspect Google and many other "Big Data" entities get away with using information based on verbiage in user agreements that most users ignore or just skim thru at best. This is how they all get away with using our data in "improper" and what would normally be "illegal" manners. The concept with the companies is to constantly push the line of what users consider privacy to the point that it will soon be non-existent. Many of us remember FB's Mark Zuckerberg's statement that "Privacy is no longer a social norm" some years back.
Doug - What I told Thomas above also applies to Law Enforcement agencies. The collection of mass personal data (including DNA) gives both Federal and local law enforcement agencies quick access to otherwise possibly unavailable data for solving crimes with information such as instant geolocation, DNA, subject's places of employment, friends and acquaintances, personality traits, sexual preferences and fetishes, organizational memberships, political leanings, driving habits, frequented locations, and the list goes on and on.
Jim - You are spot on. As you have noticed, people are beginning to become part of the "digital world" in that the commodities you describe seem to be fading away as we become more self-centered and distracted away from the real world we once cherished. I had mentioned in another article about how people are even beginning to take on the verbal inflections of digital speech used in text readers and super-snoop devices like Amazon Echo (Alexa), and Google home as you may have noticed lately in the "new" pronunciations of words like "student" as "stu-Dent", "shouldn't" as "shoul-Dent", and others.
David Montaigne Added Mar 18, 2018 - 11:21pm
It sickens me to see that Big Brother is not only highly successful in developing and implementing the use of technology to watch our every move, but that most people pay to install it themselves.  Smart technology making people dumb and opening more and more access into their personal lives...
Bill H. Added Mar 18, 2018 - 11:38pm
David-
I think it's just that most people juggle the "convenience" with the price that they have to pay. In most cases they either don't realize the price, or just don't give a shit. This ends up ruining things for the rest of us who still cherish our privacy (what's left of it).
Rusty Smith Added Mar 19, 2018 - 11:39am
People who put pictures on Google storage agree to let Google use them so Google knows where they were taken, so they know what the inside of your house looks like, and can easily identify many of the people you associate with.  Chances are they can identify pictures of your living room.
Rusty Smith Added Mar 19, 2018 - 12:48pm
Do keep in mind the video is a little misleading, both phones may not be connected to the internet and one even in the airplane mode but both are on and both have Google and GPS applications that were downloaded on them at some point in time, running the entire time.  Both may even have the local Google Map downloaded on the phones.
 
GPS does not rely on the internet, except to download map information, so if the map information is already there all the GPS applications that use it will know exactly where you are at all times when it can see enough GPS satellites.  When it can't it assumes you haven't moved.
 
Google maps does keep track of all the information the video talked about, it's part of the program, and you can look at it by viewing your Google Map Timeline.
 
If you want to hide from Google you can turn off your phone or just turn off the GPS, then the only location info the phone creates is taken from the cell towers you connect with.  When the phone it powered off it collects no information.
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Mar 19, 2018 - 12:55pm
Rusty Smith
 
" so Google knows where they were taken, so they know what the inside of your house looks like, and can easily identify many of the people you associate with."
 
With  pattern recognition they can not only gain names but can view neighbors and places you visit. Couple this, maybe, with phone GPS and you can generate a very sophisticated profile. 
Bill H. Added Mar 19, 2018 - 1:23pm
 
Coupled with the "tagging" of photos on FB and other sites, Big Data will also have a larger reference base for instant facial recognition. Luckily for people who live in Canada and the EU, facial recognition technology is restricted.
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Mar 19, 2018 - 4:04pm
1984 is upon us.
Bill H. Added Mar 20, 2018 - 1:30am
Not surprisingly, we today learned of a gross misuse of personal data relating to more than 50 million users of Facebook, along with use of the FB platform to disseminate false and misleading information that appeared to be from "legitimate sources".
Hopefully this will be a learning experience for all who use FB. It was at least a 5 billion dollar lesson to Zuckerberg today. Hopefully he might consider cleaning his act up.
I wouldn't touch FB with a 10 foot pole.
Flying Junior Added Mar 20, 2018 - 5:38am
FaceBorg
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Mar 20, 2018 - 2:30pm
Bill H
 
"I wouldn't touch FB with a 10 foot pole."
 
I agree here but submit the caveat that there are other sites where data mining can be extracted and used for profits. Our own DMV people, for example, sell lists of drivers and their addresses based on age or weight. 
 
The temptation to ignore huge piles of personal information by government or others is huge. As such I predict that such data collections will continue on and grow stronger even if FB is discontinued. 
 
That is just the age we live in.
Bill H. Added Mar 20, 2018 - 5:28pm
 
rycK - Be advised that FB is a test bed for not only data collection and other privacy-invasive technologies, but also constantly performs experiments on altering peoples moods, thinking, and views.