Saturday, May 27, 2006

Hacking the Paparazzi

I've never been much of a fan of "paparazzi" types. Their whole goal in life is to invade "people's personal domains" for no other reason than to satisfy the public's need for gossip.

Now, it appears, they are using technology to spy on each other and the FBI is taking action.

As reported in the LA Times:

"Federal agents want to know whether one of the owners of Sunset Photo and News attempted to learn what stories the staff at US Weekly, a Hollywood gossip magazine, was working on, said the sources, who spoke on the condition of anonymity."

Please note that the FBI isn't commenting.

Link to LA Times story, here.

Another story, from was a little more specific and claims that Charlie Sheen was the target of the alleged "hacking" exploit. The "person of interest" at the Sunset Photo and News (Jill Ishkanian) is allegedly good friends with Heidi Fleiss, who has claimed that the "hacking allegations" are untrue.

Not sure how credible this is, but Heidi allegedly knows Charlie quite well.

All kidding aside, hacking and a legal "Spy Industry" threaten a lot of people's privacy and now that the "Stars" are being targeted -- perhaps we can get George Clooney, Sean Penn, Barbara Streisand, and maybe Charlie's father (Martin) to speak out on this issue.

The Federal Trade Commission is taking notice and recently went after a bunch of Private Investigators, who had people's personal telephone records for sale.

Now, I'm not sure, but I might guess that some of these people are "outraged" about the telephone companies giving information to the NSA. As I've said before, the NSA is only using the best information out there - which has been gathered for years - from the private sector.

The Information Industry is big business and has been buying and selling our personal information for years.

Personally, I'd rather have my telephone records with the NSA than sold to, "whomever."

As technology continues to grow and laws fail to keep pace with it, we are all at risk. Recently, "hacking kits" were being sold on the Internet via dubious sources and if you need advice on how to do it, there are plenty of Internet groups that thrive on this subject.

Not only are there shady "Internet" sources, but you can also buy a lot of "neat" technological devices to invade people's privacy and no one will ever ask you what it's intended use is.

Industrial and personal espionage is a real problem and needs to be addressed by going after the root causes, which seem to be perfectly legal. Until we do this, our personal privacy will be out there for whoever wants to buy it.

1 comment:

T.L. Stanley said...

Good Post. Take care.