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Verizon Follows Google In Turning Phones & TV’s Into Wiretaps

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Infowars first broke invasive spying story 6 years ago

Steve Watson
Dec 6, 2012

In a move that Infowars warned over six years ago would come to fruition, Verizon has followed Google’s lead and officially filed a patent for a set-top box that will actively spy on Americans in their own homes in order to target them with custom advertisements and programming.

The patent application, which was filed in May 2011 but published last week, says that the technology will be capable of detecting “ambient action” including “cuddling, fighting and talking” in people’s living rooms.

Verizon notes that the system utilizes “a depth sensor, an image sensor, an audio sensor, and a thermal sensor” within the box. The hardware can determine what activities you are partaking in in your own home, whether it be “eating, exercising, laughing, reading, sleeping, talking, singing, humming, cleaning, and playing a musical instrument.”

The document states that the sound of raised voices in an argument could trigger ads for marriage counseling or therapy, and suggests that detection of a couple engaging in intimacy could prompt ads for contraceptives.

The box will even listen to your conversations, according to the comms giant’s patent.

“If detection facility detects one or more words spoken by a user (e.g., while talking to another user within the same room or on the telephone), advertising facility may utilize the one or more words spoken by the user to search for and/or select an advertisement associated with the one or more words,” the document states.

While the patent claims that it increases the “effectiveness, personalization, and/or adaptability of targeted advertising,” anyone who holds even a shred of value for their privacy will balk at the technology, which would be more at home in some nightmarish dystopian movie.

The patent also notes that users will have the ability to connect smart phones and tablets to the box, increasing the range and sensitivity of the monitoring device. Americans buying the product would not only be literally inviting big brother to come into their homes, but asking him to walk about inside it with them.

“If detection facility detects that the user is holding a mobile device, advertising facility may be configured to communicate with the mobile device to direct the mobile device to present the selected advertisement. Accordingly, not only may the selected advertisement be specifically targeted to the user, but it may also be delivered right to the user’s hands,” the patent application reads.

The technology Verizon is proposing to use already exists and has been adopted by other companies including Comcast, Microsoft (Kinnect), and Google.

Indeed, Infowars broke the story over SIX YEARS AGO, warning that government and industry were set to use microphones and cameras, fitted as standard within set top boxes since their inception in the late 1990’s, to spy on millions of Americans.

Detractors refused to believe it when we warned that Google was seeking to tap into microphones within laptops and PCs in order to target advertisements at users in their own homes, but now communications companies are openly announcing their intention to do so and rolling out products for that very purpose. Many of them are already in your homes.

We were considered crazy by some when we emphasized that the development would be too much of a good thing for both unscrupulous data mining corporations and the state itself not to take advantage of.

However, revelations concerning the murky relationships that exist between companies like Google, AT&T and Comcast, and government spy agencies including the CIA and the NSA have served as stark exclamation points on our warnings.

Furthermore, civil rights attorneys have warned that recent secretive cybersecurity rulings under Obama, and extensions of the NSA’s remit to spy on Americans, could allow for government and even military oversight to become commonplace within communications companies.

Whistleblowers, such as William Binney, have warned that the NSA has virtually every US citizen under surveillance, with the ability to record all of their communications. The agency is building a monolithic heavily fortified $2 billion facility deep in the Utah desert to process and analyze all of the information.

The technology to carry out such surveillance is already fully operational within your homes, it is now merely being openly revealed by the industry.

Earlier this year, now former CIA director David Petraeus lauded the rise of new “smart” gadgets, decreeing that Americans are effectively bugging their own homes, saving US spy agencies a job when it identifies any “persons of interest”.

Petraeus’ comments came in the same week that one of the biggest microchip companies in the world, ARM, unveiled new processors that are designed to give practically every household appliance an internet connection, in order that they can be remote controlled and operate in tandem with applications. ARM describes the concept as an “internet of things”.

Of course, while such technology is utilized by government and military for mass surveillance purposes, the fact that it is being openly revealed may be seen as a positive development, for it may also be used as a weapon in the peaceful revolution of information. The effectiveness of the technology rests in the hands of those utilizing it and will be determined by what degree we continue to value our inalienable rights.

The Infowar truly is in full swing.


Steve Watson is the London based writer and editor for Alex Jones’ Infowars.com, and Prisonplanet.com. He has a Masters Degree in International Relations from the School of Politics at The University of Nottingham in England.

This article was posted: Thursday, December 6, 2012 at 1:26 pm

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