Reducing the Breadcrumbs Produced By Your Digital Life, by P.L.

None of us want to unknowingly share personal information, but it’s happening everyday if you browse the web, use email, or have a mobile phone. You could decide “I’m going off the grid!”. That’s great if you can, but it’s not practical for 99% of us. The Breadcrumbs So, how might you go about reducing the breadcrumbs produced by your digital life? ProtonMail First, consider using ProtonMail for your personal email. There are no ads and no tracking. A basic account is free. I paid for the Plus account, since I wanted more features. I access ProtonMail on my iPhone …




Staying Hidden Online, by Z.M.

We’re being monitored, online. That’s nothing new though. We all know that. In a world that increasingly grows to rely upon technology, and where your individual data points can mean big money for some advertiser somewhere, it should come as no surprise that just about everything that we do online has been recorded and stored on some server somewhere. I’ve grown quite alarmed over this the past few years, but I have never really known where to even start. I just thought “Incognito” mode on Chrome was enough to hide me from all that was happening. I was wrong. After …




A 21st Century Tangibles Investing Rationale

I often have people ask me: “Why do you stress tangibles investing, Mr. Rawles?” In my estimation, tangibles always trump intangibles. I have three primary reasons why I distrust intangibles:: First: Nearly all intangible investments are denominated in fiat currencies. Because of this there is an underlying currency inflation, revaluation, or repudiation risk. Even when buying stock in the safest, most secure and impeccably-managed company it still has some risk when the investment is denominated in Dollars. Ditto for Dollar-denominated bonds. Ditto for redeemable life insurance policies and annuities. Ditto for business investments. Ditto for money market funds. Ditto for certificates …




Creating Your Own Secure Messages – Part 2, by DaytonPrepper1

Yesterday we talked about how to create and use a One Time Pad. Today we will talk about another way of encoding messages. I am sure I am not creating anything new with this method, but I have not seen it before nor do I have a name for it. My working name is Word Grid Substitution. Description of the Method The heart of this method is a 25,000 word grid. The current word grid is 10×2500. I take the message to be encoded and search for the first word from a random spot in the list. When the word …




Creating Your Own Secure Messages– Part 1, by DaytonPrepper1

I am an experienced programmer with a lot of time spent in Excel everyday for my paying job. East Sierra Sage’s article on Cipher Security got me thinking again about One Time Pads and other secure message techniques. I really enjoy automating things with Excel’s powerful formulas and macros. So I set off to create a tool for a One Time Pad spreadsheet that would create the One Time Pads and also encode and decode the messages being sent. How to Use a One Time Pad (OTP) You will need a Shift Chart and an OTP Chart as the basic …




Cipher Security- Part 2, by East Sierra Sage

I’m talking about cipher security. In review, I am a Retired Marine Infantry Staff Non-Commissioned Officer who has served multiple combat tours in Iraq, as well as most of the “skirmishes” the U.S. got involved in leading up to the global war on terror. I have taught “Survival in the Mountains” and have trained combat staff members in command post operations. I have taught Navy SEALS, Army Special Forces, Army Rangers, and Air Force Para-rescue operators, as well as many numerous foreign military personnel. During my career I was “voluntold” to write ground-up Intelligence reporting to higher headquarters. These tasks …




Cipher Security- Part 1, by East Sierra Sage

[Editor’s Note: This is good information, but readers should note that simple transposition ciphers of any type can be easily broken. Only One Time Pads and book codes offer any reasonable level of cipher security.] My Nom de Plume is “East Sierra Sage”, and I’m writing about cipher security. I am a Retired Marine Infantry Staff Non-Commissioned Officer. I served multiple combat tours in Iraq, as well as most of the “skirmishes” the U.S. got involved in leading up to the global war on terror. Two tours were served as an instructor of Mountain Warfare training for the Marine Corps. …




OPSEC Tax Preparation, by X. Liberal CPA

Many people ask me during tax season why there’s this entry or that box on their tax form. My answer? The IRS has more information on every citizen, even drilling down into data history on their family trees, than any other arm of the Federal, State, and Local governments combined. Why? Because you volunteer the information willingly! Massive Tax Code The tax code is estimated at 59,000 pages (forms + instructional booklets + adhoc tables), about 4,000,000 lines, and approximately 350,000,000 characters. Why did this massive bureaucratic enigma code not go away with the passing of the recent Bill into …




Letter: An Amazon OPSEC Reminder

Dear SurvivalBlog Readers, You have a profile and Amazon has been getting more aggressive of late. I noted an old pic from before they linked every social media organization and gave facebook-level creepy info so I deleted everything and reduced my name to something unrelatable. Use the Amazon Link from SurvivalBlog, but make sure your profile isn’t leaking too much info. (please do review with a stripped profile since it helps everyone to know which products work) – T.Z.




Internet Censorship is Now Rampant — It is High Time to Bookmark Your Alternatives

The New Censorship With every passing week, we are seeing growing censorship of the Internet. The key  mass media phrase of 2016 and 2017  has been “Fake News.” But much of what  is being called fake news isn’t, while much of what the mainstream media is pushing is indeed what is “fake.” Meanwhile, The Powers That Be are enforcing their view of “Community Standards” to quash free speech. I won’t re-hash this with a huge laundry list of particular incidents, because they are too numerous and have been well-documented. Rather, I will suffice with just a few summaries: The Google …




Letter Re: Search Engine Privacy and Security

Good day, Hugh, I recently switched over to TOR as my web browser. I am now using Proton mail as my email address, and I now use Signals as my SMS text messenger. My bases are covered. These are also recommended actions by Snowden himself: TOR sends your search through a relay of servers, making it extremely difficult to find your true IP Address. Proton mail is an encrypted server that prevent your messages from being intercepted. Signals is an app that prevents text messages to other persons, other than the person you sent the message to, from being read.




A Response to Going Analog, by M.G.

Selectric Typewriter Security Issues Back in the 1970s IBM was required by at least one of its customers to make some options available for Selectric typewriters because they discovered the Selectric design was susceptible to electronic eavesdropping that could determine what the typewriter was printing. As it turns out, mid-’70s electronics were capable of detecting not only the unique electronic signature of individual typewriter motors but also measuring the load incurred by that motor during character selection from the main power feed outside the building. So, it’s possible that even using a mechanical electric typewriter for written communications may not …




Letter Re: Search Engine Privacy and Security

Good day Sir, I want to reference to a topic which could prove of great importance. A situation where the loss of personal liberty and freedom occurs. There are some that believe that we are in that situation currently. I browse the Internet for news and factual information, much like earlier times when a person would pick up a newspaper. I have in the past used “Google” as my primary “Search Engine”. To my understanding and experience, my search results are cataloged and referenced. When I do searches through “Google”, I am bombarded by advertisements that seemingly reference my previous …




A Quiet Life: How to Lower Your Profile or Go Fully Off the Grid

Part of my work life in most weeks involves consulting phone calls.  The majority of my clients are in the U.S. and Canada.  Not surprisingly, many of my clients have questions for me about privacy.  These questions are generally along three lines:  1.) Buying guns privately, 2.) buying land privately, and 3.) how to avoid paper trails on storage food purchases.  In this essay,  I will try to address all three of those topics, as well as a few related points. One of the key concepts herein is Going Analog.  But first, I’ll mention completely dropping off the grid. Going …




Letter Re: Taking Out the Trash: Secure Deletion

HJL, Technically, short of physically destroying flash media, there is no way to insure that something is securely erased. This applies to USB drives, SD cards of all sizes, and even SSD disk drives. It applies less so to magnetic hard drives. Hard drives can drift so there can be a thin shadow of old data, but that is something only someone with very deep pockets can recover, and it would be hit and miss. With flash drives, data is eventually erased, but what normally happens is the prior place the data was stored is mapped as “obsolete, erase when …