Protection and Internet Privacy
by Paul Green
Recently by Paul Green: The
Tree Without Fruit
There is yet
more stormy weather brewing in the Bermuda Triangle of Keynesian
central banking, exploding government, and the corporate-state industrial
complexes – and even more violent than before. So as we go into
this final phase of the economic crack-up boom and on to bust, hold
on to any assets very tightly, because a lot of people are going
to be after them – and the biggest member of that group is Mr. Big
himself, Big Brother.
Big doesn’t really care whether people hold onto assets legally
or otherwise. The job of ordinary people, from his point of view,
is to just pony up anyway. If he finds out they are avoiding that
in a perfectly legal way, then to him that is the most annoying
of all. After all, why should they get away with it, while
millions of other hard working taxpayers slave away night and day
to pay their fair share? He never bothers to explain how there can
be a "fair share" of far too much.
As you will
no doubt have heard, recently the UK and a few other places have
had a spate of riots. In one of the more laughable news items was
the claim that in London, it was "anarchists" spoiling
a nice quiet en masse demonstration of spongers, against any and
all government cuts.
perpetrators had first smashed up a private building, one of them
climbed up the front and for the benefit of the world’s news cameras,
spray painted the name of the boss on the wall, followed by, "…PAY
The whole thing
was so ridiculous because the boss doubtless pays more tax than
all of them put together. But he was nonetheless, a suspected legal
loophole jumper. In other words, politicians dreaming up all the
laws they want is no longer enough – now we are told governments
should expect donations.
The other point
of amusement was that these "anarchists" wanted the boss
to donate more tax to government which, according to their title
they should oppose. But government PR machines like the BBC like
to adjust and make such words incendiary to convey the idea that
without Big Brother everything would be chaos i.e. even worse than
this fine mess they have gotten us into.
these were just spoilt kids who would destroy anyone that requires
responsibility or doesn’t give them something for nothing: heads
of business, household, church, property etc. They love the illegitimate
and unnatural Big Brother state because it serves their purpose
of destroying those legitimate natural authorities.
The main point
to note is that there are a lot of confused people out there and
whether labelled "socialist", "conservative",
"liberal", or "anarcho-sponger" most of them
are after your money for their grand ideas. They are
all hoping a new improved Big Brother will see things their way
and get it for them.
But this idea
in different forms has been growing for the last 100 years. The
results are in, and now it’s reckoning time in the West. So if you
want to get through this storm or even be able to help others caught
in it, then it is up to you to do something about it.
banks and currencies teetering on the brink of oblivion, every economic
sage worth his salt has been advising anyone with anything worth
saving, to put it into gold. The very best sages have been advising
against trusting it all to the physical location of their home country.
But of course
there is still the need to interact with the as yet unenlightened
fiat currency world. Hopefully then, at least some readers will
have taken steps to operate businesses and/or bank accounts outside
their home country. Hopefully also, they have been skipping through
every legal loophole they can find to protect those assets.
entirely on those legal manoeuvres to save them? I hope they
are not so naive.
The fact is,
the moment Mr Big finds out that enough people avoid paying up,
he will either change the law or just issue administrative "clarification"
– often of dubious legality and sometimes even with retrospective
the unwary like sitting ducks: all assets legally, officially and
publicly registered according to the old regime – and ripe for picking
off under the new. Or even if they do still comply, Mr. Big’s dependants
don’t like it one bit and at the drop of a hat will call for creative
regulatory scheming to freeze, seize, or otherwise keep the ducks
and/or their nest eggs tied up in expensive bureaucratic legal wrangling
for as long as possible.
worldly possessions are in a difficult part of the world to get
hold of, but just as significantly, they themselves may not be.
Case in point: the recent change in US gold storage foreign reporting
regulations. Now, any significant gold overseas in any kind of "financial
account" (very loosely defined) is supposed to be registered
by US citizens. It’s no coincidence of course that all this is happening
at the same time as steps to require reporting of sales by US based
Who was it
coined the term, "Registration leads to confiscation"?
My guess is Big G himself, gleefully rubbing his hands in an unguarded
moment; or it may have been a victim – after their lawyer had told
them it led to, "peace of mind". The fact is, on any list
of reasonable alternatives it doesn’t take a lawyer to know that
registration should be near the end – and there are reasonable
But the grasping
is not limited only to Mr Big; the Big gang has also bought and
paid for private collaborators. Meaning, in the "offshore"
world, that the buyer needs to beware of private sharks – and not
just the obvious fraudsters:
A couple of
years ago, one insider (tittle-tattling to the socialist "Tax
Justice Network") detailed how short-sighted lawyers and unprincipled
private bankers actually welcome legal uncertainty and regulatory
enforcement. Their reasoning is that it serves to scare smaller
clients (wholly dependent on the legal protection now gone or in
doubt) on to the next expensive strategy – and all the while, lucrative
multi-layer elite client strategies remain unaffected.
The big and
favoured banks – closest to the central bank money printing machine
– also collude with "revolving door" regulators and wholly-owned
politicians to craft regulations onerous to smaller competitors.
Like a rigged sports game, owned politicians can even be bribed
or blackmailed into taking a political "dive" to advance
powerful interests. There is no doubt in my mind this has gone on
in the recent Swiss bank secrecy compromises.
But the game
is not over yet. Also, honourable mention should be given here to
the bankers of the Swiss canton Ticino, who have so far stood firmly
in favour of financial privacy for all – while expressing their
disappointment at the lack of support from some others.
as a Strategy
I find just
about anything politicians or civil servants scribble on paper obnoxious
– just reading it develops a kind of perverse faith in their omnipotence,
far beyond any prudence or caution. So I am very glad not to be
in the legal advice business; but the upshot of it all is this:
No matter what asset protection measures you take – even with the
utmost legality – to prevent unjust seizure (public or private)
it is very much in your interest to incorporate privacy measures
into that strategy.
if it involves using offshore corporate legal vehicles, financial
accounts, or a gold depository, then to retain any confidentiality
it is essential to incorporate internet and communications privacy.
has been through an official investigation, even when found completely
"innocent", can confirm how so not fun it is. Usually,
it will all have started with a suspicion or misinterpretation of
something simple that attracted attention.
The moral of
any such story is always this: Far, far better if the boot is on
the other foot – by making sure no flags of interest are raised
in the first place. In other words, privacy is the best policy –
it: Even with the perfect strategy in place, just one home phone
call to a bank or depository, and that record forever more advertises
the location of those assets. It might not be enough to prove anything
– but since when did Mr. Big’s bureaucratic standards of evidence
include having to prove anything? At the very least, it is a starting
point for further enquiries.
But that is
just phone communications; even postal mail is increasingly automated,
reading without opening is possible, and digital snapshots
are taken of the "from" and "to" addresses.
offers such great potential, and yet can give even more away:
There are three
primary threats on the internet (unfortunately, plus a bunch of
numbering or "IP addresses" – just like phone numbers
and "Caller Line ID".
Providers – itemising and recording everything, like a phone company
of internet traffic – feeding massive spook data centres, in real-time.
With all these
and other data sources converging rapidly; in theory at least, all
Mr Big needs to do is put out a sort of "All Points Bulletin"
to get a list of everyone say, logging in to a certain bank. Or,
he could generate a report listing all internet subscribers accessing
the secure login page of a number of banks or gold depositories
– to be flagged for further enquiries.
secure login page might keep the details secret, but it is also
a very public record that a financial relationship exists.
I am sure that
such perfectly coordinated, highly efficient surveillance systems
are not fully in place, simply because they are the offspring of
bloated bureaucracies. But things are certainly heading that way
and especially with a known target, it is not very difficult to
track activity. In the UK, for example, even local education officials
can monitor phone calls and internet traffic.
is not only just as vulnerable, but introduces the additional concerns
that both activity and unique internal handset IDs are continuously
located – often to within a few feet – by either cell mast "triangulation"
or GPS. That’s on top of the recent concerns about Smartphones secretly
storing and sooner or later uploading a location tracking history
Here is something
else to bear in mind:
the recording and reporting of internet activity is not being acted
upon right now, with the vast majority of US internet providers
and with all in the EU, the activity history (inc. websites visited
and email/call/chat/Skype contacts) is continuously accumulating
at the provider and/or spook data centres, and in many cases will
still be there for years to come.
So – what can
briefly or accidentally logging in without any privacy measures
will leave a trail straight to their mother lode. This is like mistakenly
dialling a phone number and then hanging up – a unique entry will
still be on the itemised bill, and just as obvious as any other
call. But there is at least one thing they could do:
Pick a number
of secure bank/depository/financial websites located in the same
or a similar jurisdiction. Then head to the account login pages,
one by one, and just leave them open for a few minutes. It doesn’t
matter whether they have a username or password (that is not visible
from outside) the point is they are visiting a secure login page
and thereby creating a smokescreen. It is perfectly plausible and
also true that they were just making a number of enquiries.
But what if
they have been "securely" accessing their lode for some
time, but without any thought for internet privacy?
In that case,
all I can think of is to change internet provider as soon as possible
(or disconnect and re-subscribe under a new name) and start thinking
about internet privacy from then on. Hopefully the trail will be
lost in the shuffle.
There are a
number of free and low cost solutions online – generally called
"proxy servers". These do have many valid uses, but are
also fraught with pitfalls and often leak information around the
that a proxy server normally only conceals identity from the
online destination address, but conceals nothing from the Internet
Provider – almost all of whom, at some stage, will have links
to BB’s snoops.
The best solution,
in brief, is to use a "VPN" privacy service, which basically
moves your entire internet activity to the third party service’s
computer and away from your own. It is important to know though,
that this must be set up correctly to avoid identity or activity
leaks. Then there are a number of secondary pitfalls for the unwary,
and on top of that are usability factors like speed, response and
also jurisdictional risk at the server location.
But you can
certainly go a long way towards improving things yourself, and for
the practical implementation of these and other solutions, you could
look at some of my other internet privacy articles. Maybe start
the New Internet Privacy Threat" which also links to
most of the others at the end. If it is all too "tech"
for you, just try "Easy Internet Privacy" to get
started. Some third party service and software suggestions may need
updating, but if I wrote a privacy article every week, I would still
say the same basics as detailed in those articles.
your needs are demanding (e.g. online trading) or if there are amounts
involved that matter, you could definitely use some help. In particular:
if you have spent significant amounts on offshore financial or precious
metals strategies, then spending on assistance to lock down the
last few percentage points of internet privacy risk is just good
One other thing:
In finding solutions, it always helps when you understand the problem
a bit better – and so that’s one reason I recently put together
an internet privacy tutorial in video form.
You will find
this video tutorial easily understandable – and it is educational
rather than promotional. I’ve been careful to use little or no jargon,
but there is still something for everyone in the three main parts:
"Privacy Threats"; "Privacy Solutions"
and "Pitfalls for the Unwary" – the total being
around 50 minutes. There are helpful notes throughout, as well as
graphics where useful.
To watch, you
will need the passphrase – the name of the only US presidential
candidate worth listening to. As long as bandwidth holds up, you
can view it free right here:
Some, who will
have watched the main tutorial, will be seriously considering tech
help. They can email me about the additional 30 minute "Special
Services" video, which is both educational and promotional.
Primarily, this details "The Internet Privacy Package"
– a complete customised privacy solution, which includes some unique
hardware and software as well as consultancy time, technical expertise,
extensive video tutorials, updates, anonymous third party accounts
It also includes
a summary of the unique "Swiss Gold Storage Solution."
This is in several ways the best facility I know of for smaller
scale storage (<$250k say) or as a privacy conduit to and from
a main depository. It is absolutely non-reportable (even under new
US rules); very inexpensive; high security, etc. etc. This is a
reasonable alternative to registration, wherever you live.
the Privacy Package is not for everyone and while I never accept
personal info or ID (please use first or nickname only) there has
to be an approval process to avoid crooks and the fake personas
of junior snoops with nothing better to do.
This is a time
of crisis and therefore I believe, opportunity. But it is certainly
the worst possible time to place total reliance on the shifting
quicksand of political legislation or administrative fiat – even
everywhere are getting desperate, and with it more and more overtly
abusive, violent and arbitrary. They will take what they can most
easily see and will not let their own legalities get in the way.
If it is low hanging fruit, they will pick it, eat it up and argue
about the pips afterwards and at the victim’s cost.
Yet, for myself
and for others who are prepared, I am hopeful. Partly this is from
having lived through dictatorship and hyperinflation before – in
another part of the world. In a hyperinflationary environment at
least governments are weakened, scorned and ineffective. While still
dangerous and while "formal" freedom will be lacking and
some certainly will suffer, informal freedom can also be maximized
and new opportunities abound. Especially for those who still have
something to invest when the dust finally settles.
One final thought:
So what have you got to hide if you haven’t done anything wrong?
I would say, more to the point – Why would anyone want to know,
if they didn’t intend to take it from you?
protection strategy you choose, to reduce vulnerability: have a
policy of privacy.
Green [send him mail] supplies
computer security and privacy services to clients worldwide: remotely
from the UK or Switzerland, and on-site within Switzerland.
© 2011 by LewRockwell.com. Permission to reprint in whole or in
part is gladly granted, provided full credit is given.
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