Posted by Shane Becker on
Facebook is a massive surveillance social graph1 which was already dangerous before an openly fascist government held power.
If you imagine that dark times lie ahead. If you foresee war. A domestic civil war, a domestic war against a fascist coup, a world war. If you think we’re heading into an apocalypse. If you’re worried about registries and roundups.
Then, start acting like it’s already the future.
Keep It Secret, Keep It Safe
Stop saying publicly what you’ll do, if… because when dotdotdot happens, there’s a record of your premeditation.
Don’t make your enemies’ job of finding you and your associates easier by broadcasting it on Facebook.
Cops Love Facebook
Facebook has a map of the relationships between a billion plus people. They are cavalier with what they store about us, our behavior, and our relationships. Cops already use Facebook to target activists, dissidents, protestors and potential co-conspirators.
When the fascists start their roundups and pogroms, this social graph (that we voluntarily created and Facebook extended) will make their job much easier. It’s a self-populated registry.
This is not a drill. There is a war on. It’s not coming in the future. It’s already started.
Imagine if the SS, Stasi, COINTELPRO or any secret police had this kind of map. Hell, imagine if King George had this kind of map! You think Paul Revere2 was broadcasting about his plans for a midnight ride?
Dark and dangerous times are upon us. We must now make the decision between what is easy and what is right.
Protect yourself, your friends, and your friends’ friends. Quit Facebook too.
Secure Your Communications
Quitting Facebook is, of course, not enough to protect us. Whether you quit Facebook or not, you can harden your security and privacy defenses by doing a few easy things. Please do.
Install Signal for iOS or Android (or Mac via Android). Use it for messaging. Don’t use Facebook Messenger or SMS or anything else. Don’t use this “only for the stuff you don’t want getting out”. Use it for everything all of the time.
Use DuckDuckGo for all of your online searches. Change the default search engine on your browsers (on phone and laptop) to DuckDuckGo, too. They don’t keep logs of everything you search for. I’ve been using this as my default search engine for a couple years. It just gets better and better.
Get a good password manager and swear by it. Don’t use the same password on any two sites. Use_strong_ passwords. (My password recipe is 64 characters of letters, digits, and symbols.) I use 1Password on Mac and iOS and love it. Use two-factor/multi-factor/2FA authentication everywhere that you can.
EFF Surveillance Self-Defense
The EFF’s guide is really great and goes into a lot more depth than this post. If you’re feeling adventurous, read that and harden your security and privacy even more. It provides detailed instructions for things like GPG and Tor. Highly recommended.
You can think of a social graph as a map of you, your friends, your friends’ friends, and so on. It’s map of who knows whom, how they know them, who they have in common, what they have in common, the distance between relationships, etc. The reality is that we’re all very interconnected with each, by not very many jumps. That’s what makes Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon possible. ↩
Paul Revere’s ride was itself an attempt to communicate securely, and he was detained at one point in the course of the ride by British forces. It is true, however, that Revere would not have been able to leave for The Ride if he had explained in advance on Facebook that he would do that in the event of British armed action. ↩