Your Cell Phone Is Threatening Your Privacy

Recently by Bill Rounds: Police Corruption Out of Control: Threatens Personal Information

The issue of camera cell phone privacy is extremely important in today’s age and far-reaching. Many cell phone cameras by default and automatically reveal tremendous amounts of information such as the physical location of a picture, time, date, cell phone model, etc. Additionally, a number of phone companies and facilities along with laws and implementations have increased so much in recent times that it is often difficult to keep up on what privacy protections you have.

Begin with checking the kind of subscriber information you are providing to a company for services. Some employees and hackers have a tendency of using such private information for nefarious purposes. You might use a ghost address. A pre-paid cell phone or SIM card can greatly increase your cell phone security and privacy. A super ninja trick would be to use a pre-paid wireless service paid for with bitcoins.

Some networks give you the option of recharging your phone continuously without asking you for private information. But this habit may not be most effective if you change your pre-paid connections often in order to maintain privacy and escape notice of any miscreant. For example, you could use a Google Voice number, although anything with Google may be problematic for privacy concerns, to forward to your mobile phone number and then you could get different SIM cards every few months.

Many phone numbers are easily available in telephone directories or transactional databases. Every time you give your number to a company chances are that they are recorded, databased and archived. These numbers are vulnerable because often criminals might use the number in order to create a completely false profile with the information and is another reason to keep your phone number private. Cleaning up from identity theft can be time consuming. Additionally, if the company has no valid reason to know your phone number then you could decide not to provide one or provide one which is not actively used.

In countries like the USA it is easy to block your caller ID details. Call forwarding or call screening, a service provided by Google Voice, is another excellent option to avoid callers who will disturb you and your privacy. With Google Voice you can even block numbers. These are great ways to protect your cell phone number.

Your location is an integral way in which you can easily be tracked. Make it a point to turn off the GPS navigation system or WiFi which decreases the probability that your physical location may be tracked. Prevent your phone from being too clogged up with data. From time to time it is a good idea to get delete messages, call records, contacts, files, etc. Then should you lose your phone anyone who finds it will not be able to access as much information and therefore you will be less vulnerable to all those who are seeking to expose your privacy.

If you take pictures with your cell phone and post them online then this can expose your camera cell phone privacy because often the physical location is encoded with the picture file. For example, the EXIF file may contain information such as when the picture was taken, what kind of phone model and if your cell phone has GPS then the coordinates.

Last but not the least, make sure that you do not stay away from your phone too long because you may never know who may access it. And, of course, password protect it!

Cell phone privacy is very difficult to attain. Protect as much of your confidential communications using your cell phone or smart phone as possible. Check out the book How To Vanish or the Basic Privacy Guide for more tips on taking control of and protecting your privacy.

Reprinted with permission from How to Vanish.

Bill Rounds, J.D. is a California attorney. He holds a degree in Accounting from the University of Utah and a law degree from California Western School of Law. He practices civil litigation, domestic and foreign business entity formation and transactions, criminal defense and privacy law. He is a strong advocate of personal and financial freedom and civil liberties.