One Graham's View

Monday, July 31, 2006

Big Brother and Beyond

Good afternoon,

As life and recuperation at OGV house continue to progress, I’ve been reading up on some incidents that have been re-emphasizing that Big Brother is always out there, lurking and waiting.

Oh! What’s that you say? You doubt me? Then consider the following:

First, there is
ZabaSearch,
a free people search and public information search engine. It gives more detailed feedback than most others that I’ve explored and its records go back a bit further than any other I’ve explored. It even puts a person’s birthday along with the accompanying information.

Go ahead. Give it a try. You know you want to.

I tried it. I used my own name…no, not OGV, but my real moniker, and found my three previous addresses stored along with the correct phone numbers for those addresses. It wasn’t up to date, though, but I’m sure that was only because we moved and changed phone numbers just three months ago. I’m certain that they will update the database soon and have me correct for four previous addresses.

I played around with the site a bit, using other foks names that I knew. Hmmm. This is a powerful tool. If you know somebody’s general age, this can help you pinpoint a specific location and phone number for them, much better than Yahoo or Google’s peop.le searches.

Second, if that wasn’t enough to creep you out about who’s keeping information on you, then think about these thoughts:

You know your previous creditors report information that is checked any time you apply for some new credit. What other information is being tracked about you? Go ahead and take a guess.
Do you think information that is gathered about you is checked by anybody else other than creditors? Go ahead, take another guess and figure out who else is checking up on you.
For the answers to these queries, check out this Baltimore Sun
article.



Now, consider this final question:

If there isn’t enough information about you already out there which was gathered when you had to provide when applying for credit, insurance, jobs, housing, or any other routine divulgences you have undertaken, what other information have you knowingly and willingly given to people?

If you think you are immune to “phishing,” think again.

If you’re interested in how your own divulgences can be used against you, especially if you use MySpace, you will want to read
this.

Now that I have made you a little paranoid, I can only offer you a nice, “Smile, Mon,” as my t-shirt from Jamaica proudly proclaims, with its dreadlock-adorned Smiley face.

Be safe out there.

OGV

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