Is Someone Watching You?

December 7, 2013 | By | Add a Comment

Is Someone Watching You?
It Could be the Federal Government

But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment.   (Matthew 12:36)

 

If you thought that clicking on that email attachment couldn’t hurt you, please read on. . .

The FBI (Federal Bureau of Investigation) has a special phishing team that exploits weaknesses in email and computer hardware. What does that mean to you? It means they may actually be able to use the camera on your computer to spy on you — without you ever knowing it.Big Brother is Watching You

Years ago I was a television repairman. Back in those days, I would drive a service van to a customer’s home, haul in my big case full of tools, tubes and transistors, and repair their television set.

More than once people asked me a question like, “Can people see me through the picture tube while I’m watching them?” Repair people like myself used to laugh about that. Surely the customers had been reading too much in George Orwell’s 1984, where such things routinely took place, right?

In Orwell’s Oceania, the ubiquitous telescreen (transceiving television set) monitored the private and public lives of the population. What’s creepy is that Orwell wrote that book back in 1948, when most people had never seen a television.

Fast forward to 2013. Although the FBI says is uses the technique sparingly, the fact is they have an ongoing program of spying on citizens through the use of computer malware. Malware is “bad” (mal is a prefix meaning evil) software. Examples are that attachment in your email you shouldn’t have opened, and others too numerous to list here.

It turns out the FBI can secretly turn on a computer’s webcam to spy on the person without even lighting up the indicator light.

Marcus Thomas, former assistant director of the FBI’s Operational Technology Division in Quantico — said, “The FBI has been able to covertly activate a computer’s camera — without triggering the light that lets users know it is recording — for several years, and has used that technique mainly in terrorism cases or the most serious criminal investigations.”

“Because of encryption and because targets are increasingly using mobile devices, law enforcement is realizing that more and more they’re going to have to be on the device — or in the cloud,” Thomas added, making reference to remote cloud services. “There’s the realization out there that they’re going to have to use these types of tools more and more.”

The government is getting better and better at their art as computer users move away from old-style computers (to tablets, smart phones and the like). Users are also getting more careful about disguising their locations and identities.

Most Americans are conflicted about the possibilities for abuse that are inherent in their government having such power, much less the willingness to use it against citizens. “Fine, but just use it against criminals,” someone might say. But Americans are presumed innocent until proven guilty. We are already seeing Christian behavior criminalized in many parts of our country. Witness the Oregon baker that refused to make a cake for a homosexual wedding. In our society, he’s now a criminal. Not just any criminal, but a Hate Criminal.

Two scriptures suffice as warning to the unwary Christian:

And the lord commended the unjust steward, because he had done wisely: for the children of this world are in their generation wiser than the children of light.  (Luke 16:8)

Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.   (Matthew 10:16)

These words, from the lips of the Lord Jesus Himself, exhort us to be careful in the presence of our enemy. Like a roaring lion, Satan roams about, seeking whom he may devour.

[ Note: Read the Washington Post article ]

 

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Category: Internet, phishing, virtual, Writing

About the Author ()

Suspense fiction writer. I have a wife whom I love, and five children ranging from college to middle age. I love each one. I've worked a day job as a senior software developer since 1999. Previous to that I spent nearly thirty years as a foreign missionary in Vietnam and China. Yes, I speak Chinese as a second language :-)

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