OPSEC: It Is More Important Today Than Ever
If you talk about it, then everyone knows about it. They know about your preps, your habits, your ideas, and your identity. All can be stolen, compromised, or used against you, and it doesn’t take a disaster for it to happen either. People are always looking to cash in on other people’s hard work. It is pervasive in today’s society, stealing what others have accomplished, by simply exploiting your own words. Words better off not spoken when it comes to plans, preparations, firearms, and your family.
It would not be consider out of the norm for extended family members to turn on each other, your friends certainly can and will, and strangers will not hesitate to take advantage of you if you leave them an opening.
Your trash can be gone through and your purchases logged, so you have to think twice about using credit and debit cards when buying large amounts of so-called Prepper supplies because you simply don’t know who is logging your purchases and tracking your habits.
You have to assume your phone calls are logged because to believe otherwise puts you at risk. You would not monitor what you say as closely, if you don’t believe, you are being listened to, so it’s better to assume the worst. Your location can be tracked by your cell phone usage and there is a surveillance camera on every street corner.
Sounds like fear mongering doesn’t it, like something out of Orwell’s book 1984, which was published in 1949. The book describes a world of perpetual war, omnipresent government surveillance, and public manipulation, dictated by a political system euphemistically named English Socialism. Sound familiar, Orwell could have written his book a few months ago and we wouldn’t call it science fiction. It would not be sold in the fiction section of any bookstore.
This is not to say anyone is doing any of what has been described above, but they could if they wanted to, because there is the technology that makes it possible, and there is the will and the motive to do what has been described as well. It is important you do not give anyone a reason to look at you any closer than they already are, by staying quiet about your preparations and plans for when the SHTF.
When the Prepper movement started, it was all about getting everyone on board, and some people envisioned one thing while reality dictated another. The reality is that survival is at an individual level, you, your family and some close friends are as one when it comes to survival.
You cannot announce to the community, to your neighbors, to the authorities that you are a Prepper in hopes it will spur others into action. Prepper Utopia is probably not possible. The world where everyone lives in harmony, contributing to the good of the group or community after the SHTF is not reality.
Society will change, but will ultimately remain the same. The ones that need what you have will try to take what you have, and then, there are those that never have enough, and will want what you have. You have to make sure no one knows you have anything.
Anything you receive through the United States Postal Service is tracked, recorded, and in many cases, x-rayed. UPS and FedEx have similar ways of keeping track of the contents, where they came from and to whom they are shipped. Someone somewhere knows what you are getting in the mail, whether it matters to him or her or to anyone else is another matter. However, did you give them a reason to wonder or to look more closely?
1.) Cash purchases in small amounts spread around will not draw attention.
2.) Avoid gun shows, because it would not be beyond the realm of possibility to have someone recording license plate numbers, or obtaining video recordings of the event. It may not matter if they do, but at some point, it may matter to someone, and retrieving the information would be a simple matter if it was needed.
3.) Avoid posting anything on social media sites and survival forums about your preps. Use deception if you need to if you feel the need to communicate online. The fact your IP address is logged on every site may be a red flag to someone at some point.
It is very difficult to hide online, and many websites will not allow you to connect if you use browsers like Tor, for example. Web sites will know if you are employing deceptive practices and that in and of itself is a red flag. No matter what you do your Internet provider will have a record of your comings and goings, and they are logged and stored.
4.) Spread your supplies around, but avoid commercial storage units to store emergency supplies, because every move you make is recorded at the units, and you have no idea who may have access to your unit.
5.) Watch what you throw away. Trash at the curb can be considered public domain and people can and will snoop through it. Use a quality paper shredder, transport your own trash to drop off centers, compost or burn what you can if it is legal to do so.