Following the revelations that the NSA extensively collects information on citizens worldwide, it’s clear that privacy is no longer a right we can take for granted.
What’s more, the recent information shared by WikiLeaks surrounding CIA hacking and spying emphasizes a chilling fact: You can be spied on at any moment. While law enforcement should learn to love encryption, it’s clear the CIA is set on spying and hacking targets of interest.
Here are 4 ways the CIA hackers could be targeting you, wherever you are.
1. Smartphone hacking: turning your smartphone into a bug
The CIA’s Mobile Devices Branch has targeted smartphones as a way to spy on unsuspecting users. Whether you’re an iPhone or an Android user, the CIA has developed exploits that can access text and audio communications directly on your phone before they get encrypted by your favorite chat app.
Furthermore, hacked phones can be instructed to relay your location and have their cameras and microphones activated remotely, inconspicuously turning your phone into a CIA bug.
2. Smart TV spying: watching you through your TV
We’re all used to watching people on TV. Sadly, the CIA may now be watching you through yours. According to WikiLeaks, the CIA has developed a program called “Weeping Angel,” which can place a target smart TV in “fake-off” mode. When this happens, a user may think their TV is off, but in fact it will be switched on as a surveillance device, recording conversations and sending them to covert CIA servers.
3. Computer hacking: infecting your computer with NSA technology
Malware is not only used by nefarious criminals seeking to extract money from you. WikiLeaks reported a substantial effort by the CIA to infect and control computers through its own tools, potentially corrupting CDs, DVDs, and USB sticks. Furthermore, WikiLeaks reports that the CIA has developed capabilities to not only infiltrate systems, but to remain undetected in infected devices.
4. Carjacking: controlling your car on the road
Another capability the CIA reportedly has is the ability to hack the control systems of modern vehicles. Not only does this allow them to know where you are and where you’re going, but it gives them the potential to carry out nearly undetectable assassinations.
How to protect yourself from CIA spying and hacking
The truth is, the CIA and other intelligence agencies around the world are ramping up efforts to monitor and interfere with perceived targets of interest. To protect yourself from the CIA’s hacking:
- Frequently update the security settings of your devices
- Do not use unencrypted communication tools/devices
- Never leave your devices unattended
- Follow these tips for internet privacy
Remember: No matter what the CIA and other surveillance groups choose to do, the power to remain anonymous remains with you.