Top 10 Ways the Government Can Track you

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The government can  track you and it might not as well give you any reasons to do so. For the last ten years, authorities devised innumerable high-end ways that could range from tracing you calls to hiring private investigators.Some of these goes against the idea of privacy while, some are readily accepted like mass surveillance . But the extent to which a private sphere can be penetrated is often question as the line between public and private blurs. Listed below are 10 ways which government can use to track you.

10) UID – Unique Identification

The Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) is an agency of the Government of India. It is responsible for implementing the AADHAAR scheme. AADHAAR scheme is a unique identification project. Under which the agency aims to provide a unique id number to all Indians. Once implemented to its fullest extent AADHAAR scheme can take up anywhere between 6 billion and 30 billion U.S dollars. It is one of it kinds scheme, for the Unique I.D, fingerprints and irises are being captured using high quality sensors. Albeit it seems a humongous task to keep a record of such a big population, it is proving to be a good way to keep record of all those people who were living on the margin of social recognition prior to its implementation.

Nevertheless the vulnerability of securely-stored digital information to theft has been exposed by recent leaks that have been reported in both the national and international forums. It has been demonstrated that biometric fingerprints can be duplicated using technologies that are almost homemade for illegal activities.

9) IP tracking

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While it may not be that easy to try to track a person’s on network activities using the cookies stored on the system. It can still be a major concern for advocates of privacy. The most common way of tracking a user is hiring a company to provide internet cookies. Companies like double Click could be roped in. Through these cookies it becomes easy to link the website using the same cookies, which may have been surfed by the user.  There are companies which offer pin point IP Location tracking on premium rates. Apart from government agencies it is actually a cake – walk to track a person’s IP. Even the torrents downloaded can be traced back through the peer list. With the advent of proxy services and anonymous user sites which rally against invasion of cyber privacy, it has become a bit difficult to achieve precision. But the high-end technology eventually finds its way around the loopholes.

8) Call tracing

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The government and telecoms service providers can now track caller locations on real-time basis. On the basis of a number of surveys carried by the national dailies almost 60% people are ok with the possibility of government tapping their phone, in the wake of terrorist activities. Technically, after the implementation of call tracing policies at least 60 per cent of the calls in urban areas will be accurately tracked within the 100 meters range of the nearest cell tower. Government further looks forward to increase this proportion to 75% in urban areas and 50% in the rural areas, achieving 95% accuracy.

The motive for the same is to track a phone call made, within a time- frame 3 to 5 minutes. So in case of a crisis more time could be bought for formulating a defensive strategy with the least possible damage.

7) Smartphone tracking

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Your phone can get you tracked in ways you can’t even imagine. Access free Wi-Fi from phone allows tracking of visitors in malls, museums, offices, factories, secured areas and just about any other indoor space. It can then be used on the pattern of radar to examine the foot traffic in retail spaces. It is so powerful that it can be used to pinpoint the exact location of any individual registered with the system.

You almost always leave your Wi-Fi on because if you don’t your phone won’t stop reminding you that you are not connected with so many Wi-Fi hot spots around (Triangulation by Wi-Fi hot-spots is important for making location services more accurate.)  Thus with your device always connected to the internet it’s not as difficult as finding a needle. If you know the basics you can very well do it on your own like a Boss!

 

6) Online forums

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When you post anonymously online your IP is logged by the server. And once you IP are recorded then it is virtually impossible to keep them untraceable. The details which can be traced are suffice to pin point your exact location what country you are from and your ISP’s details etc. If you did something illegal or posted something that is against the law then they could engage the law enforcement authority and hand over your recovered details from the ISP to their lawyers or the suitable authority. From there on it becomes very easy for techies to find out who you are. As pointed out earlier it’s a pretty simple process though it actually requires a proper court order to retrieve that information though it doesn’t mean it can be done anyway.

 

5) CCTV footage

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Mass surveillance in big cities and other densely populated areas is a usual thing and there is no place that is not being watched by a CCTV camera.  That includes police cameras and private video surveillance along the streets, in big shopping malls and restaurants. And when the Google glasses hit the market on a larger scale; you will be monitored with more than four cameras at any given particular time and public place. Your every move and behavior will be recorded, analyzed and stored, simultaneously. Though mass surveillance played a huge role in the recent Boston bombings and the perpetrators were brought to justice but just the very thought of always being under the watchful eye of ‘Big Brother’ is definitely sending anonymous groups in paranoia.

 

4) Fingerprints

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You have no idea where all you leave them. Trust me when I say this, your fingerprints can be logged in such different ways that you can’t count them on your tips. Anything that you do or might have been associated with just because your finger prints were found on the site can come to haunt you when you are least expecting it. Consider this; a very bright acquaintance of mine was wrongfully booked for a petty theft and arson case. Just because his fingerprint was found on the product, which he had checked on his previous visit to the store, he was taken as an accused and all the legal obligations were carried out including fingerprints and statement. Later from the CCTV footage that was retrieved from the destroyed laptop proved his innocence. Years later when he sought admission in a college, he didn’t get par the interview on further enquiry it was found out that the college authority had run a check on his fingerprints from his admission form and his past caught up with him.

3) Surf history

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Google stores your Google Search history from the first day you made a Google account to this very moment. And if your account was to be hacked the person will know about all the pages you have ever clicked. Seems scary right?  But if you are involved with the authority it won’t take them more than a court order and a day or few to retrieve your entire search history, which may or may not prove the extent to which you are linked to the crime you are accused of. Back in 2009 an Australian student was booked for the brutal murder of Tosha Thakkar. What got him? His browsing history.

2) Virtual Shopping

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You surfed a few sites online, saw a few products. Then you hit a link and you saw some vintage gun collection then you further went on to read about a Kalashnikov. Just a curious mind right but if authorities are keeping track of your cookies and web history then probably you can jump onto our next entry right now. Many a time tax evaders fall for online shopping and end up with more than, what government thought they could pay, in their carts.

1) Hired investigators

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If you have crossed all limits of inciting paranoia than you leave the Big brother with no choices but to send hired eyes down your lane. Then, that pizza delivery guy, that lawn mowing company’s van even though you live in a residential area and have no lawns are the signs that you are in big trouble. You don’t need to be a genius to guess it or you could wait for our next list ‘Top Ten Ways to hide from the virtual eyes’. Just weigh your chances of escape well before you do something that might lend you in ‘Watch list’.

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