DeleteMe Privacy Service Review Part I

I frequently get asked about paid privacy services. There are several such services out there. Unfortunately I have not worked with any of them, and cannot give a good answer. Until now, perhaps. As you know, last week I put out a call for a volunteer for the DeleteMe privacy service. Within just a few hours of last week’s post going live, I received a response from John (a pseudonym). John is a 30-35 year old male from the mid-western United States. He and I exchanged a few emails and got busy. Continue reading “DeleteMe Privacy Service Review Part I”

Housekeeping Announcements

Doubtlessly you have noticed some changes to the look and feel of the main site. Similar changes are also coming to the blog, and I wanted to address these directly.

Newsletter: The first issue of the newsletter will be sent out on October 1st, 2016, and successive issues will appear in your inbox on the first of each month. The newsletter will contain exclusive content that will not be available on the blog. It will also contain the standard assortment of news, announcements, reminders, and other goings-on. If you haven’t subscribed to the newsletter, head on over to I won’t sell, trade, or otherwise give up your information, but I still recommend using a Blur masked email address (as many of you already have!) or ProtonMail alias.

Bitcoin: I am now accepting the cryptocurrency Bitcoin for book sales. Currently, this website is the sole source for purchasing The Complete Privacy and Security Desk Reference with Bitcoin, as well as the Your Ultimate Security Guide series.

Blog: Some minor changes are coming to the blog. There will be a visual change – I am adding a widget bar along the right side of the interface. This will contain some things you all have requested, including an RSS feed signup and a search bar.

Books: Work has commenced in earnest on Your Ultimate Security Guide: iOS 10. It should be finished by October 1st. It will be available through Amazon. Additionally, electronic copies will be available for purchase on iBooks, Kindle, and directly from me (as a PDF). Michael and I have also formally started The Complete Privacy and Security Desk Reference – Volume II: Physical. We have a week-long meeting planned to get the bones of the book in place, and it should be available for sale in within the next 12 months.


Thirty-Day Security Challenge: You guys have asked for it, so here it is: all the links to the Thirty-Day Security Challenge. Apologies for taking so long to get this together. I have also noticed that some of the Challenge posts are perhaps a bit dated. In my (very limited) spare time I am slowly beginning to update these.

Twitter (@opsecguide): Though I doubt many of your are Twitter users, I post all blog posts there, as well as occasional items of interest from the infosec world.

DeleteMe – Privacy for Hire?

As readers here know, I really like Abine’s privacy service, Blur. What you may not know is that Abine also offers a service to protects privacy in another way. DeleteMe is Abine’s automated “opt-out” service. If you have read Hiding From the Internet or The Complete Privacy and Security Desk Reference, you know that opting out yourself can be frustrating and time consuming. The allure of services like these is in their convenience. You pay for the service, then carry on with life. Within a few months, your stuff is gone. Or so they say. I decided that I want to see for myself how services like this work, so I reached out to DeleteMe… Continue reading “DeleteMe – Privacy for Hire?”

Smartphone Wi-Fi Security

Recently reader asked me to write a post about the implications of Cellular, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and Near Field Communication (NFC) radios in smartphones, and the privacy and security implications of each. I will, and it will be in several parts. Today I am going to cover smartphone Wi-Fi security and privacy. I’m sure you’re heard that you should leave your smartphone Wi-Fi turned off when it’s not in use – but why? Continue reading “Smartphone Wi-Fi Security”

Vehicle Privacy and Security

After hearing my recent interview with Aaron on the In the Rabbit Hole Urban Survival Podcast a couple weeks ago, I realized that I’ve yet to talk about vehicle privacy and security. For those of us in North America, vehicles are a way of life. Vehicles present some unique privacy and security challenges. In this post I’m going to talk about a few things you can do to improve vehicle privacy and security. Most requires some minor behavioral modification. Continue reading “Vehicle Privacy and Security”

ProtonMail Premium Review

Email is a service that we all rely on. Finding an email provider that promises a good balance of privacy, security, and convenience is a fraught proposition, however. As readers here doubtlessly know, I have huge privacy concerns around email. I hate giving out my real email address if possible, because it equates to attack surface (more on this later). I also hate using the same email for multiple services, but this creates major convenience problems. And I can’t store email with providers that either a.) dont’ store my data securely or b.) store it securely but scrape it for marketing purposes. Readers here also know I am a big fan of ProtonMail. This is why I decided to give ProtonMail Premium a try. Continue reading “ProtonMail Premium Review”

Death and Passwords

I recently received an email from my close friend, Gabriel. He is deployed to a very dangerous corner of the globe. In it he asked me to handle some of his digital affairs in the event of his death. Of course I agreed, and the conversation started a train of thought: if I died, what would happen to all my electronic files? With no way to access these, everything I have created would be forever lost upon my death. Worse still would be a scenario where, as the result of injury or illness, I could not remember or enter my own password(s).  These are my ideas: one workable yet secure solution to the “death and passwords” problem, and one perfect world scenario.

Continue reading “Death and Passwords”

Tattoos, Tattoo Recognition, and Privacy

When I was a kid, people with tattoos were pretty few and far between.  If you had ink there was a good chance you’d been in the military or jail.  If you had tattoos on your hands, head, or neck you had almost certainly been to jail, or were, at very least, somone people didn’t want to mess with. These days a guy (or girl) with knuckle tattoos is just as likely to be a barista or art major as an ex-con.  A recent Harris poll estimates that 1 in 3 Americans has a tattoo, and half of millenials have them. Continue reading “Tattoos, Tattoo Recognition, and Privacy”

My Ultra-Private iPod Phone 5: Use Cases

At this point, my ultra-private iPod phone is setup and ready to use.  If you choose to follow a similar course, it is important to define how you will actually employ the device before you start to use it.  This will also dictate the tradecraft you should undertake to support your use case.  As I see it, there are essentially two ways this device can be used. Both will make you more private and secure.  It is up to you to decide how far you need – or want – to take it.

Continue reading “My Ultra-Private iPod Phone 5: Use Cases”