How To Set Up A Bulletproof Security Smartphone
The main feature that consumers typically look for in a smartphone, laptop, or desktop is privacy. The factors working against your anonymity, however, seem too powerful to be overcome, making any discussion on the privacy of smartphones seem meaningless. In the bid to improve your privacy, there are certain things that you can do on both smartphones and laptops. However, in this article, I will first cover the most crucial differences between the two and then proceed towards setting up a bulletproof security smartphone. In the beginning it might seem that securing your smartphone is the same as securing your laptop. Nevertheless, there are four powerful differences.
- SIM identification
- Operating-system configurability
- Mandatory google-account
- GPS triangulation
Now, let's talk about them in detail.
Table of Contents
- Strong Differences Between A Laptop And A Smartphone In Respect To Security
- Is Burning My Smartphone The Only Solution?
- What Are The Defenses Against The System?
- Final Thoughts
Strong Differences Between A Laptop And A Smartphone In Respect To Security
Here are the major differences that you might not always pay attention to.
1. SIM Identification
Say, you bought a laptop. In this scenario, your laptop is not linked to your identity. But, you can easily be tracked by tracking your payment method. Let’s assume that you have bought your laptop with cryptocurrency, Bitcoin (BTC). In this situation, there is no straightforward link to you in the laptop.
On the other hand, when you purchase a smartphone, you will require a SIM card to make use of the phone. The SIM card has all your personal details that you had provided to activate it. This includes your name, address, and other identificational detail causing the major issue.
2. Operating System Configurability
If you installed a Linux-based operating system on your laptop, which you undoubtedly did if you care about your anonymity, you are aware that there are many tools available to you to monitor network traffic, stop programs, close ports, and perform other similar tasks. The simplicity of using your terminal won't be the same even if you have an Android phone, which is built on a Linux kernel. In fact, while administrator capabilities can be obtained on a laptop by typing "sudo" before a terminal command, they are "restricted" by default on smartphones.
This implies that you cannot overclock your hardware, install custom ROMs, perform a full backup of your system's image, perform system-wide system changes, uninstall system applications, or install programs that need root access, among other things. You are exposed because you cannot fully control your operating system.
3. Mandatory Google Account
This is another thing that directly points to you. After purchasing a new laptop, you can install any software you want without revealing your identity to anyone. When you purchase a new smartphone, you will almost certainly be asked to create a Google account before you can install any app. In fact, the Play Store, from which you can install any app, is directly linked to your Google account.
4. GPS Triangulation
The telephone companies are always aware of where you are. Most importantly, to guarantee coverage for telephone calls, your cell phone automatically connects itself to the strongest and nearest cellphone tower. The positions of the cells provide your location thanks to GPS triangulation. You can also include the recently implemented Google traffic service to make yourself even more paranoid.
When you receive traffic alerts with the road colored yellow (moderate traffic) or red (congested traffic), you're utilizing data collected by Google about the geo-location of every smartphone on the road. To make things simple, if Google knows there are a lot of smartphones on a particular street, the street will be highlighted in red on your map. This means that Google is constantly tracking you using your GPS. Google also saves your GPS history, so it knows where you've been in the past. You can turn off Google services if you want, but you'll never be able to avoid GPS triangulation because that's how phones work.
Is Burning My Smartphone The Only Solution?
Yes, if you REALLY want to remain anonymous, burn it down right now!! After taking everything into account, it is clear that a smartphone is a giant ﬂuorescent directional arrow to you. Thus, you need to set up a bulletproof security smartphone.
Anyway, if you want to live a semi-normal life while using a smartphone but are concerned about your privacy, there are many things you can do to improve your privacy. Isn't it true that hope never dies?
What Are The Defenses Against The System?
Here is what you can do to set up a bulletproof security smartphone.
1. Protection Against SIM Identification
Discard Mobile Phones
If you can't avoid sim-identification, don't use a sim. Throw-away phones became popular in the United States; they are inexpensive and sold without contracts or sim cards (around 40 USD). You purchase them, activate them over the phone, use the prepaid credit, and then dispose of them. They are not smartphones and have only SMS and phone call capabilities. However, they are completely anonymous.
Get Anonymous SIM Cards
Many people on the darknet markets can sell you anonymous sim cards. This means that you can purchase (say) a French sim card linked to a spoofed non-real identity. I'm not sure how reliable these kinds of sims are, but if you're desperate, they're probably worth a shot.
2. Protection Against Operating System Configurability
Rooting Your Phone
Rooting your smartphone is not at all a tough thing to do. It is an important method to set up a bulletproof security smartphone. That said, it might need a separate procedure based on various models. Some smartphones are easier to root while the others are a task. The Tor Project recommends Nexus for this sort of activity. However, a lot of other smartphones aid in this procedure. As soon as you gain root privileges, you gain complete control over your smartphone.
3. Protection Against Mandatory Google Account
Anonymous Google Account
Nobody compels you to use a Google account that includes your name and surname in the email address. The account will be associated with the IP address you used for registration and access, but you have several options for masking your IP address, which we'll discuss later. You may also choose not to utilize the Google Play Store, in which case you will not require a Google account.
Alternative To App Stores
Thankfully, the Play Store is not the only app store in the globe. There are several more app shops that do not need a Google account. Amazon, F-Droid, Slideme, and GetJar are a few examples of useful names. F-Droid piqued my curiosity since it is a free and open source app store derived from Aptoide, an alternative decentralized store in which every user functions as a shop. Slideme categorizes programs based on device compatibility, payment method, and location, whereas GetJar is the largest app store, offering over 849,036 apps for platforms such as Android, Windows Mobile, Symbian, Java ME, and Blackberry.
4. Protection Against GPS Triangulation
Utilizing A Phone That Is Not Linked To You
Yeah, the GPS triangulation remains the most important issue. But consider this: while you cannot avoid GPS triangulation, you can surely avoid informing them that the phone they are following is yours. And this brings us back to the phony sim and throw-away phone debate. You can also go for military grade smartphones or a 5G rugged smartphone.
5. Various Other Useful Tools
Custom Paranoid Operating Systems And Phones
Several "stealth" phones have hit the market, promising a better "built-in" anonymous experience; Blackphone from SilentCircle is perhaps the most well-known. There are also several anonymous-friendly operating systems available, such as CopperHead OS. I typically do not believe in "built-in" solutions; I feel that anonymity takes the use of your brain; it is a process made up of many little acts that help you stay anonymous; it is not a fact of built-in tools. Nonetheless, for those of you who just utilize your wits appropriately, these built-in answers may be of assistance. If you believe them.
Orbot is the official Tor-project Android app for using Tor on your smartphone. This is a must-have for individuals who wish to conceal their IP address and have a bulletproof security smartphone. Just press the onion button, and tor will begin to function on your smartphone.
Orfox is a Firefox browser that has been updated to work with Orbot. Simply use it when Orbot is running to conceal your IP address while browsing the internet.
Orwall expands on the notion of using Tor on your smartphone. It is an app that requires all other apps to connect to the internet via Tor. It requires root rights to function, and it is unquestionably a good alternative for increasing anonymity while having a bulletproof security smartphone.
Pry-fi is a fun program that lets you fake your mac address over a public network. The mac address is the physical address of your device. Spoofing it will completely conceal your device's physical identity within a public network. Pry-fi also features an option that changes your mac-address on a regular basis, making connecting the mac to you extremely difficult.
Alternate Search Engines
Please do not use Google since it records all of your searches. You might also use DuckDuckGo or Disconnect.me. The DuckDuckGo program also enables use over the Tor network helping in having a bulletproof security smartphone.
Virtual Private Network (VPN)
You may undoubtedly use a VPN service to encrypt all of your communication, concealing it from your ISP and obscuring your true IP address. You can do it on your smartphone just as easily as you do on your computer. Most VPN services also give service for many devices, so you only have to pay once to cover four or five devices.
Encrypting your phone adds another degree of protection enabling you to have a bulletproof security smartphone. Practically every model supports file-system encryption.
I propose OpenKeychain, an Android software that implements PGP.
Using Encrypted Email
Consider using services like ProtonMail, which encrypts your emails, allows you to connect over Tor, and uses two-factor authentication. ProtonMail is an open source program created in Switzerland by scientists from CERN and MIT; it employs end-to-end encryption, has a no-log policy, and you will not be requested for personal information. TorBirdy is an intriguing Thunderbird addon that functions as a tor-button, creating a connection through Tor.
Smartphones are designed to let you communicate, share your experiences with people all over the world, and make your life easier and more enjoyable. They are not designed to keep you anonymous or help you enjoy a bulletproof security smartphone. As a result, they should never be envisioned as secure closed systems.
But, you may have a million reasons to continue using one while also being concerned about your privacy being abused. If this is the case, I have excellent news for you: there are a lot of people who share your interest in developing solutions to help you stay anonymous, to help you keep your data away from businesses and governments.
Note that these tools will considerably increase your privacy, but your behavior is the first line of protection; you might have all of the tools mentioned in this article and yet utilize them in an ineffective manner, leaving you susceptible.