CIA Director: Web-Connected Devices in Your Home Make it Easy to Spy on You

The Kinect is one of the many home devices that can potentially be used to spy on citizens.
The Kinect is one of the many home devices that can potentially be used to spy on citizens.

New technologies are making the work of CIA Director David Petraeus a whole lot easier. According to him, the advent of wireless and web-connected devices has caused citizens to bug their own home, effectively allowing the spy agency to collect a wealth of information with great ease. If that wasn’t enough, people now readily share the most (in)significant details of their lives through Facebook, which now displays all of this information in a very convenient time-line.

Another concept that is brushed upon in this article is cloud computing. Touted as the next big thing in computer technology, cloud computing is about storing all of your data in “remote secure servers” – ultimately eliminating the need for computer hard drives and storage devices such as USB sticks. While this technology sounds very convenient, it is set to cause a drastic change in the world of computing: In just a few years, almost all of the personal files, pictures and data of computer users across the world will be stored in gigantic servers that will be owned by only a few mega-companies. Apple already has a system called iCloud that automatically copies the contents of iPhones and iPads (including pics, contacts, etc.) to a remote server. As Pertraeus himself says, all of this information is now “located, identified, monitored, and remotely controlled” by the CIA – and whoever else. Here’s an article about Petraeus love of new technologies from Wired.


CIA Chief: We’ll Spy on You Through Your Dishwasher

More and more personal and household devices are connecting to the internet, from your television to your car navigation systems to your light switches. CIA Director David Petraeus cannot wait to spy on you through them.

Earlier this month, Petraeus mused about the emergence of an “Internet of Things” — that is, wired devices — at a summit for In-Q-Tel, the CIA’s venture capital firm. “‘Transformational’ is an overused word, but I do believe it properly applies to these technologies,” Petraeus enthused, “particularly to their effect on clandestine tradecraft.”

All those new online devices are a treasure trove of data if you’re a “person of interest” to the spy community. Once upon a time, spies had to place a bug in your chandelier to hear your conversation. With the rise of the “smart home,” you’d be sending tagged, geolocated data that a spy agency can intercept in real time when you use the lighting app on your phone to adjust your living room’s ambiance.

“Items of interest will be located, identified, monitored, and remotely controlled through technologies such as radio-frequency identification, sensor networks, tiny embedded servers, and energy harvesters — all connected to the next-generation internet using abundant, low-cost, and high-power computing,” Petraeus said, “the latter now going to cloud computing, in many areas greater and greater supercomputing, and, ultimately, heading to quantum computing.”

Petraeus allowed that these household spy devices “change our notions of secrecy” and prompt a rethink of “our notions of identity and secrecy.” All of which is true — if convenient for a CIA director.

The CIA has a lot of legal restrictions against spying on American citizens. But collecting ambient geolocation data from devices is a grayer area, especially after the 2008 carve-outs to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. Hardware manufacturers, it turns out, store a trove of geolocation data; and some legislators have grown alarmed at how easy it is for the government to track you through your phone or PlayStation.

That’s not the only data exploit intriguing Petraeus. He’s interested in creating new online identities for his undercover spies — and sweeping away the “digital footprints” of agents who suddenly need to vanish.

“Proud parents document the arrival and growth of their future CIA officer in all forms of social media that the world can access for decades to come,” Petraeus observed. “Moreover, we have to figure out how to create the digital footprint for new identities for some officers.”

It’s hard to argue with that. Online cache is not a spy’s friend. But Petraeus has an inadvertent pal in Facebook.

Why? With the arrival of Timeline, Facebook made it super-easy to backdate your online history. Barack Obama, for instance, hasn’t been on Facebook since his birth in 1961. Creating new identities for CIA non-official cover operatives has arguably never been easier. Thank Zuck, spies. Thank Zuck.
– Source: Wired



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87 Comments on "CIA Director: Web-Connected Devices in Your Home Make it Easy to Spy on You"

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"The CIA has a lot of legal restrictions against spying on American citizens."

I must admit I lol'd.

Ethernet cables FTW!!!

Well a lot of people are now worried about tracking, privacy, the government spying on you, etc and all of that. But what is the whole point of being worried about that when you are just a normal citizen doing your daily chores and enjoyin life. What does it gain for the Government to spy on you when you have done nothing wrong alll your info on the web out there is not gonna help the Government in anyway if you are not a suspect or even if they do spy on you, you are clean and theres nothing to worry about.

Now dont suspect me being with the Government side, am just a normal 17 year old kid.

the thing that you are doing that they think is wrong is having the wrong thoughts. they want you in a state to do whatever they tell you. they are looking for signs of independent thought or resistance. that is what makes it so scary!

Speaking of losing out privacy, have you noticed the new commercials for Comcast home monitoring services? Now THAT scares me as well, just what I need is my cable company having (more) access to my "personal security". I am closer and closer to unplugging but just can't seem to break off the relationship…I mean, that's where all my friends are now days, right? No ones hangs out anymore, we all play Words With Friends online instead of Scrabble in person…right?

You're right. We've become addicts, haven't we? Without the internet we can't function.. we just think to connect for a max 1 hour and we end up browsing for hours no end. When we are out instead of talking, we mess around with our mobile phones. That's an activity I resisted so far, the mobile phone fiddling.

that front camera on your iphone is not for face talk it was put there for reason so when ever you are on your phone they can turn it on and watch you and what you are looking for on it .duck tape your laptop camera also.

this is just driving me mad now, I'm suicidal, it's like when the f**k is it going to happen? I'd rather it be over with ):

We are well and truly living in the Matrix now. The media shows us the pretty pictures they want us to see and that becomes the reality that people believe. Meanwhile Facebook, video games, the internet, and television provide the distraction that is also the noose around our throats. It's sick and terrifying and would be hilarious if it wasn't so mind numbingly frightening. I could brag that I saw this danger from the minute I heard about each and every one of these devices, but so what? It hasn't stopped it. Hell, most of you probably felt the same way. Afterall, we're here already. I wouldn't even care that these idiots are willing to sell their souls for complacent security if I could just opt out. But it always comes back to that, I suppose. Mob rules and those who dissent are either spat upon or steamrolled. Or both.… Read more »

Maybe we rely too much on those silly gadgets to be happy and God will allow this so we can draw close to him like older times!….it may do us and our relationships some good!…oh gosh I suppose ull just Die without cable won't ya?…..NOT!

while i was reading this, the alarm went off at the airport, ATTENTION ATTENTION while the lights were flashing….

How many techno devices can we create to kill all the brain cells……..

Keep em' busy the mind is a terrible thing to waste.

Lets isolate them in tiny little boxes all by themselves.

Don't say a word keep your mouth shout and click away…

Don't go very afraid very afraid.


lets surround the hous and round up.

To the detention camp we.

Stand in line and get your i.d. chips here.

there was no where to go

we saw your every move

we had our eye on you.

technology can be good, too. we are all using it to get to this website for example. just like anything else, it can be corrupted.

ill be getting rid of cable as well. first off, we dont watch it. nothings on tv but those blasted reality shows. second, you know they only offer satellites stuck to the side of your home and/or those digital boxes located in all your rooms. spying spying spying big brother cant get enough. time is winding down. wont be long before all the masks come off and i pray to GOD, who is our only hope, that i wont be here to see this big brother/nwo system take over full blown

This is the article I have been looking forward to. When I was a child, we had the first generation Nintendo. But, we would rather be outside playing. Riding bikes, playing basketball, walking through the yard. I have twin 5 year old nephews. When they come over to visit, I try to keep the video games and hand held devices their mom sent with them stowed away. If they don't see them, they don't think about them. When they come over, we play outside and inside, but there is not much technology in my house. We don't have cable or any gaming systems. And they are satisfied. I am not a mother yet, and, should I decide to become a mother, we will not have these items in my home. They are unnecessary and it seems like the more the kids play with these "toys" and stare at a TV… Read more »

when you try to get rid of those things, just be prepared for your friends to say: oh you didn't know about my birthday party? I sent out an invitation on facebook. your mom will say I tried to call you on your cell but you never answer. People will avoid calling you at home because they would rather send a text. I'm just saying, it will get lonely.

Good points. I don't want tons of technology either. My dishwasher broke down and I haven't even bothered to buy a new one. I got rid of the cable, even when my decent landline phone device broke down I had it replaced with a 3 quid one lol. As to my mobile phone, I hardly ever charge it. My parents think I'm a bit odd when they visit me, especially my dad. Everything seems to be second-rate and he looks down on me. lol. I think we're on the same wavelength and I was afraid of being considered primitive and weird. Good there are other weirdos around.

If that makes us weirdos, I am fine with that!

I don't get crazed every time a new device comes out and go spend my hard earned money. That is crazy. I don't have too many friends that do what I do. For the most part, they agree with what I have to say, but still they're out every time there is a new iPhone out, etc.

I just can't waste my money like that.

I have a now "old-fashion" DVD player and all ten seasons of Friends. I watch a bit of TV before bed, but I am not glued to it from the time I get home from work 'til the time I go to sleep.

I don't believe in this.


Every time I go on the web, I stick a nude picture of Katie Price in front of my webcam.

That way, they know what I *want* them to know.

Of course, God forbid, I might be one of the few who don't look at pron or go on 'terrorist' websites and might – just might – be ordering my groceries online.

Privacy is far far more valuable than Gold and Platinum… cold hard truth even more so. 🙂

Stalin would have been proud

Before such tech developments comes to my country.Jesus would have arrived to kick the Elitists dirty butts…heheheh..Besides,all their plans in preparation for the One world Government,is a foolish waste of energy,bcus,when the era comes,it will only last for 3 years thereabout.hehehe,

It is the religious, of all denominations, that will have the biggest, rudest, most let-down awakening of all. Due to their utter shock of all they thought and believed not being true, they will truly be like deer staring into car headlights. Oh, the tangled webs They wove when at first they practiced to deceive… Knowledge truly is power. It's hard to feel for those/anyone who takes anything at face value and doesn't investigate, especially when we're talking about a life long path of belief. Oh my god, indeed. How could they not research?! Just about every single thing you think you know didn't come from you at all but from your mama, daddy, priest, teacher, peer, boss, etc etc etc etc etc etc etc etc. What good is freedom when the only validation that one needs to know if something is really, truly, true is that someone else agrees… Read more »

there are ways to have knowledge for yourself too. if you believe what you said, then what is the point? we are all just lemmings and who cares. that is ridiculous. people are valuable and they can find truth.

All companies are connected to the illuminati whether they won't it or not, whether they know it or not.

So Everything will end soon.

what is "soon"? God's time is not man's time.

I think american people should make a great campaign against this procedure…

Written by Alphonse: Microsoft Kinect Spy System “So you just got the Kinect/Xbox360 gaming system and you’re having fun, hanging out in your underwear, plopped down in your favorite lounge chair, and playing games with your buddies. Yeah, it’s great to have a microphone and camera in your game system so you can “Kinect” to your pals while you play, but did you read that Terms of Service Agreement that came with your Kinect thingy? No? Here, let me point out an important part of that service agreement. If you accept the agreement, you “expressly authorize and consent to us accessing or disclosing information about you, including the content of your communications, in order to: (a) comply with the law or respond to lawful requests or legal process; (b) protect the rights or property of Microsoft, our partners, or our customers, including the enforcement of our agreements or policies governing… Read more »

Thank you for spelling it out for those who were is such a hurry to get online and read these posts that they didnt have time to read what the agreed to. most people save up their money and can hardly wait for the next newest gadget to come out. Theyre just begging to give up their rights. Just to be entertained.

i think that what the governments of the world will be looking for/at first are the subversive types – the kind of people who are wise to them and who are awake. they'll try to wipe us out first and then it's game on for everyone else.

“We’ll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false.” — William Casey, CIA Director


¿ Operation RAFTER

¡ Project MINARET

¿ Project SHAMROCK

¡ Project ThinThread

¿ Project Trailblazer

¡ Project CHATTER

¿ Project MKDELTA

¡ Project MKNAOMI

¿ Project MKULTRA

¡ Project Blue Book

¿ aNd MoRe ¡ is funner 😉

All I can say is: you must be some KIND of sick, rotten pervert to wanna sit and spy on someone else. I wouldn't dare wanna spy on someone else, because I might end up seeing something I DON'T WANNA see, like someone wiping their butt in the bathroom; or some lady on her period, changing her tampon; or someone digging boogers out their nose and wiping it on their shirt. Oh, but I forgot: perverts like to see stuff like that. It turns them on sexually and gives them thrills to see people going about their daily lives, minding their own damn business, not giving ONE damn about them or their ridiculous spying. It takes a real NUT CASE to spy and get off on spying and I bet they do. Governmental spying on innocent people has become the new sexual p*********y. I hope they waste their time spying… Read more »

Wow. More and more I'm disliking the world I live in. Back when I was growing up, there was so many kids outside playing, eating ice cream on the sidewalk, riding bikes, playing tag, kickball etc. and now? All I see in my town are mostly blues patrolling the streets we once played in :'(… The NSA Is Building the Country’s Biggest Spy Center (Watch What You Say)! A project of immense secrecy, it is the final piece in a complex puzzle assembled over the past decade. Its purpose: to intercept, decipher, analyze, and store vast swaths of the world’s communications as they zap down from satellites and zip through the underground and undersea cables of international, foreign, and domestic networks. The heavily fortified $2 billion center should be up and running in September 2013. Flowing through its servers and routers and stored in near-bottomless databases will be all forms of communication, including the complete contents of private emails, cell phone calls, and Google searches, as well as all sorts of personal data trails—parking receipts, travel itineraries, bookstore purchases, and other digital “pocket litter.” It is, in some measure, the realization of the “total information awareness” program created during the first term of the… Read more »

We've been drawing attention to the fact that the Kinect might be used in this manner for quite some time. The data the Kinect is capable to collect is extremely valuable and will not remain untapped, especially with Micro$oft's focus on the FB/G00gle competition. I don't intend for this to come across as a shameless sales pitch, so I won't mention our product by name, but just to say that we will continue to make people aware of such implications and hold M$ feet to the fire in the process. Our message has been picked up by several major MSM outlets, Official Xbox Magazine, Engadget, etc. which generally mix it with the tired "tinfoil hat" cliche, but nevertheless are allowing people to engage in the conversation. Keep it up VC. All the best.