In this day and age, one of the most valuable and sought after thing is your personal information. Companies who want to target you as a consumer pay to collect your personal information through various and always more clever ways. One recent technique we saw in the news is your smart TV, the biggest names in the industry have you accept terms and conditions in which it is or sometimes not very clearly stipulated that they can and will listen to your conversations and even gather visual information from your smart TV camera. One technique that has been utilized for now for over a decade is your social information. Facebook, Instagram and most major social apps and websites gather your personal information to be resold at the highest bidder. This in turn gave way to whats called "social engineering". If we take a look at the dictionary, the definition of these words are: 1) the use of centralized planning in an attempt to manage social change and regulate the future development and behavior of a society. 2) (in the context of information security) the use of deception to manipulate individuals into divulging confidential or personal information that may be used for fraudulent purposes. If we try to put this into easier to understand words, it means that social media around the world are not only constantly gathering our information but also trying to manipulate our behavior through various methods.
If you are like most people, the gathering of your personal information is somewhat an uncomfortable situation that makes us feel spied upon constantly, like if we had no more privacy or what we call "Big Brother". To avoid this, one might think that changing your phone for a new one and not utilizing any of your old accounts and instead create new users is enough to disappear from the grid but surprise tells us Researcher Stephan Certic, a specialist in security that works on finding new techniques to become really invisible. It is not the case, in fact, he tells us that within a mere 24 hours, any entity trying to locate you will have done so. How could they you might wonder? What he explains in this great article about reverse social engineering is that since you have had a smartphone abd social apps installed, you have been providing information regarding your everyday habits. For example, every friday, you like to go out to this restaurant/bar and you login to the free WIFI or every day at 9am, you talk a walk in the same park with your dog. That is something that any hacker/agency can easily find again using the SS7 hack, which is pretty well described here. To summarize, anyone with hacking capability can hack into the SS7 network and locate any devide that follows the same pattern as you and voilà! They now have found you using your social habits. This means that to avoid being tracked or found you not only have to change all your devices and usernames/accounts but also you have to change your social habits.
Being invisible in 2018 is not an easy task but with all that new information, we hope that you will succeed.