Wednesday, April 7, 2010

The FBI Is Hot On My Trail

A privacy-invading disclosure by Newsweek  in February that has been bothering me for several months.

"It may come as a surprise to most of the owners of the country's 277 million cell phones, but their cell-phone company retains records of where their device has been at all times—either because the phones have tiny GPS devices embedded inside or because each phone call is routed through towers that can be used to pinpoint the phones' location to within areas as small as a few hundred feet.

Such location "logs" never show up on your monthly cell-phone bill. But federal court records filed over the past year indicate that federal prosecutors and the FBI have increasingly been obtaining such records in the course of criminal investigations—without any notice to the cell-phone customer or any showing of "probable cause" that tracking the physical location of the phone will turn up evidence of an actual crime."

So, I have a GPS devices in my phone.  I generally carry my phone with me all day long.  The FBI can obtain my location records,  without telling me or without probable cause.

I'm feeling guilty and worried already. I'm already imagining what they would find if they furtively scanned my records. My bizarre daily behavior could cause deep suspicions.

They would find out that I visit  the bathroom more times than normal in  a day. Since they are carefully watching the timeline for potential criminals, they would also suspiciously notice I spend a lot of time in the bathroom.  Extra time.  More time than normal.  What they won't find out, is that I secretly keep a book stashed in there, so I can actually have some private reading time during the day.

Do you imagine they would think it suspicious to discover that I almost always make two trips to the library, usually two days in a row? What they wouldn't find out, is that first we bring the load of books and pick out a new batch. The second day, we return that last book that was wedged between couch cushions or slipped between the bed and the wall.

Would it look suspicious to find a trail blazed back and forth from the bedroom to the living room while using the cell phone during the day?  What they can't see is the horrifying faces and severe hand motions I'm making while threatening my little monkeys to be quiet so I can actually have a conversation with the person on the phone.

Would the fact that occasionally I go to the same grocery store three times in one day, in a few hours time, but use a different cashier each time cause them some concern? What they wouldn't find out is that I keep forgetting things and am too embarrassed to go back to the same cashier.

If they're tracking my location, doncha' think my normal everyday behavior looks suspicious? This is a typical scenario that might be confusing to the FBI agent that is tracking me.

Go to the storage room to retrieve a needed kitchen item. 
Walk by the laundry room and go in.
 Fold the load in the dryer, move load from the washer to the dryer, refill the washer. 
Walk back to the kitchen and begin a new chore. 
Remember I needed an item and walk back downstairs. 
Pause on the steps long enough to pick up an item.
Walk it to the room it belongs in.
Walk back to the kitchen. 
Remember that I needed an item, walk down to the storage room.
Stomp in frustration because I can't remember what I need. 
Return to kitchen to stimulate memory.
Walk back downstairs to go to the storage room.
Stop on the steps and notice the dust.
Walk back upstairs to get the hand vac.
Walk back downstairs and vacuum the steps.
Walk back upstairs to return the hand vac to the charger.
Walk back downstairs to go to the storage room.
Walk by the laundry room and go in
Fold the load in the dryer, move load from the washer to the dryer, refill the washer.
Return to kitchen
Notice it is too late to actually make dinner, so order pizza.

This latest technical advancement has caused a personal bubble invasion for many Americans. We can feel badgered, harrassed and restricted by this latest news flash that the FBI COULD track our every move.

I'm feeling guilty and worried.

Maybe I should start reading in the kids' bathroom.

It might throw them off my trail for awhile.


  1. I wonder what the FBI does when you sell your old cell phone on Ebay but have transferred the old number to a new phone? =/

    Did you know they chip animals now? It costs $35 to have your dog chipped in case he gets lost. Humane Societies can "scan" them and find out where the owner can be located.

    Humans are next...

  2. I hate to break it to you Mindy, but I think you're safe! Too funny though -- loved the post!

  3. Ha! They're after you! Watch out!

  4. Your funny Mindy. Thanks for the chuckle.

    mama to 8
    one homemade and 6 3/4 adopted

  5. Ha , ha, ha. And all across America and around the world housewives are devoting their time and much depleted energy to sending the FBI on a wild goose chase while real criminals are getting off scott free!
    Love it Mindy.
    Be sure. THEY are watching our every move.


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