Letter: Computer Backup Software

Hello SurvivalBlog Readers I would like to ask what system you would recommend for backing up computers? The reason I ask is that recently I had a hard drive crash in which I almost lost all of my data on my computer- including a couple of novels I had been working on. The crash had happened while backing up the computer to an external hard drive. Luckily it looks like my external hard drive did not die and as I’m writing writing this message it is retrieving the files. In addition to an external hard drive what other things would …




The Internet Gulag: Demonetization, Demonization, and Deletion

A wave of Internet censorship is sweeping the globe. This censorship is no longer just the nefarious work of totalitarian nations. Many western nations are experiencing their own brand of censorship that is being promulgated by ostensibly “private” companies. (Although many of these are near monopoly utilities that could be classified as public accommodations.) The War on Guns Dozens of conservative, pro-gun videobloggers and news outlets have been demonetized by YouTube in the past two years. By flagging these sites as “not family friendly”, viewers must now toggle “Restricted Mode: Off” and even when they do, advertisements are no longer …




PGP for Preppers- Part 2, by Groundhog Gravy

We should be especially careful when communicating electronically: it’s little more than trivial for a government, a corporation, or even a couple of well-equipped criminals to intercept phone calls, emails, or text messages. This article explains how to use simple, secure tools that do only encryption and do it right. These are based upon a tool that is significantly better than the name suggests, Pretty Good Privacy (PGP), and offers excellent communications security for preppers. Part 1 covered PGP and how it is used. Now, we are continuing. Setting an Expiration Date Now that you have created a key, there …




PGP for Preppers- Part 1, by Groundhog Gravy

Introduction We all have a need for private communication. Whether it’s details of our preparations that we want to share with others in a group, discussing tactics, carrying on trade, or any of a hundred other matters, we should be concerned about keeping our communication private. We should be especially careful when communicating electronically: it’s little more than trivial for a government, a corporation, or even a couple of well-equipped criminals to intercept phone calls, emails, or text messages. We can use encryption, which transforms data into a form that can only be read with a secret key, to help …




Remain Anonymous Online and Protect Information- Part 2, by Contributor

I’m going to show you how you can remain anonymous online and protect information and communications. We have already gone through the purchase of a computer and its setup as well as establishing a virtual private network (VPN) and virtual machines. Now, let’s continue on our journey for online anonymity. Firefox Don’t forget to have your VPN up and running as you continue to setup your virtual machine (VM). Now, download and install Firefox from mozilla.org. Open the Options and go to Privacy and Security. Under History, set it to Never remember history, and restart the browser. You’ll probably be …




Remain Anonymous Online and Protect Information- Part 1, by Contributor

Would you like to remain anonymous while online? Would you like to protect your communications and information? Well, I’m going to show you how you can accomplish this. This is intended to be a comprehensive, full paranoid guide. So use everything or just some to get the protection you deem appropriate. It might be best to read through this guide, determine everything you’ll need, and then go step by step. At the end, I’ve provided some resources for additional help, if this doesn’t provide enough in-depth guidance. Start From Nothing, Remove Everything Let’s start from nothing. You need a computer, …




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.