More than just a Ham radio blog.
is an informative, cynical and sometimes humorous look at what is happening in the world of amateur radio.

Saturday, 9 October 2010

Federal Bureau of Incompetence

The FBI have become the laughing stock of the espionage community after a US born student found a GPS tracking device attached to his car and posted photographs on the net to find out what it was. The student whose father was from Egypt was targeted because of an anonymous tip off that suggested he might be a threat to national security. To add insult to injury the FBI later came knocking to ask for their device back. The FBI told him not to worry they had all the information they needed on him and he was "boring"!!! You can read the full story over at Wired.com and see the post that started it all at Reddit.com

No doubt the civil liberties people will be up in arms about this invasion of privacy and there will be arguments until the cows come home about if this was truly necessary for the security of the United States, but what amazes me is the incompetent way in which it was done, look at the size of that thing! These days it would have been a million times easier to track and bug him through his own mobile telephone and laptop. Devices that do the same job as the one used are now so small the chances of finding it are close to nil and do not require eight C cells to power them.

Readers in the UK might be thinking "this could never happen here" but I can assure you that the security services in the UK are no better than the FBI. There are a few tales I could tell here but who knows what trouble I might find myself in trying to explain how I know and who told me but I have had one experience first hand of what happens. Back in the 1980's my father who was a children's entertainer appeared on a television show called 'Record Breakers' in an attempt to establish a record for balloon modeling. His challenger actually beat him but my father was just happy to get some publicity. A couple of weeks after the show he received a summons to the tax office. The idiots in the tax office basically told him it was because he had been on television and if you are on TV you must have been paid millions. My father laughed at them and told them of the pittance he had been paid but they would not believe him. He had to employ an accountant and return with all his accounts numerous times, but he could not convince the morons. It was then that I detected something strange on the telephone. I was at that time, much to my fathers annoyance, the prime user of the home phone as I spent hours courting my girlfriend of the time, so when the phone suddenly had a strange noise in the background, made odd clicking noises when you picked up the receiver and took several seconds to get a dialling tone, I noticed. In my large family we got a lot of mail and we started to notice our mail was arriving two or three days late and had been badly opened and resealed. We were fairly sure my father was under surveillance by the Inland Revenue Service and we send test letters to prove our mail was being intercepted and it was. They must have had fun cleaning up all the glitter we put in the envelopes from their office floor. When something like this happens you start to wonder are you becoming paranoid but strangely no sooner had the noises disappeared from the telephone than the mail started to arrive on time unmolested and the two grey suited guys in the camel coloured Ford stopped hanging around outside the house. So if the tax man will go to these lengths one can only imagine what the security services get up to if you are considered a threat.
Apologies to my regular readers for the lack of posts here. This was due to holidays, followed by a period of playing catch up after two weeks away and then I have been unwell for a couple of weeks. Being sick had one advantage; The hard drive on my Sky Plus box has been at 97% full since the first week I bought it and while confined to the sofa with a box of tissues and a bottle of Scotch I got it down to 97% empty, just like the Scotch. I also got to watch the whole of the Ryder Cup golf, brilliant. Now if only I could have my lungs clear of this thick green mucus I might feel normal again.

1 comment:

  1. Ref: The F B I thing ,well you only have to watch N.C.I.S. to know which is the smarter cookie in the jar......
    someone once told me F B I was short for Fat,Bungling and Incompetent, maybe that was a reference to their late cheif ??? I have no Idea .
    but... If do not want to be followed , leave your cell phone at home (switched on ) get on your horse, (enviromentally frendly) free fuel grass, at the roadside help the communitty to grow More grass ,(leave them dolops of manure everywhere,No conjestion charge..!! (Try and pin a parking fine on a horse.!!) wear a burka so no one will know who you are,
    and if asked, tell them you work for the Goverment Robbing the poor to give to the rich .... Nothing ever changes ......
    now where did I leave my false moustache and cape ...!!!!