Just slip out the back, Jack

28 10 2014

There oughtta be an app for that.

That’s never a sentence I thought I’d write, given that a) I don’t have a smart phone or tablet, and thus b) don’t use apps.

Still, after reading about California cops who nicked nude photos from women’s phones, I thought, well, wouldn’t it be possible to create an app which, when you entered a particular password, would present a Potemkin version of your phone?

I mean, this already must exist, right? Somebody who was upset by TSA or border patrol or law enforcement snooping of laptops must have figured out a way to get around directives to lay bare their files by coming up with looks-so-real dummy drives, a kind of fronting which makes it seem as if some (real) files represent all files.

I know fuck-all about either hardware or software, but I have heard of mirror disks and disk partitioning, so shouldn’t it be possible to fake out a snooper by calling up a bland version of a phone or table in place of the real one? Or by asking that question am I just demonstrating that I know fuck-all about hardware and software?

In any case, a decent Potemkin app would also have to dummy up the data on storage space, and, unlike the infamous villages, appear from all angles to be real. Users, too, would have to include enough info in the bland version to make it seem real, so the app would have to make it easy to assign anodyne status to photos, messages, and whatnot. And given that many people don’t lock their devices between active use, perhaps the app could be have a default version, such that the bland drive is what appears after the phone is aroused from sleep.

It wouldn’t be foolproof, regardless, especially in cases when one’s device is confiscated: with enough time, techs could presumably figure out how to get around the false front.

But sometimes fronting is all you need to get past the nosy cop with your privacy intact.

So, app-people, if you haven’t already done this, get right on it!

And if you already have, well, never mind.

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