- Dec 16, 2017 at 8:17 pm #3507852
“Anybody out there have a microphone that is always on and attached to the Internet in their house?”
You might be surprised. Have a cell phone/tablet? Not hard to hack/get malware installed, really, and turn your microphone/camera on without you knowing it. (The NSA even had a hack that could make you think you turned your phone off, even looked like it was off, but it was actually still on and listening in. And thanks to poor security practices, many of those hacks are now in the wild.)
Have a computer that’s connected to the internet? Same thing.
Have a smart TV connected to the internet? Same thing.
And beyond microphones…
Do you have your phone’s or tablet’s ‘wifi’ and ‘bluetooth’ always on? If so, hackers can see what networks you connect to, and spoof those networks so you’re connecting to theirs instead, without your knowledge.
Do you hide your SSID thinking you’re being security conscious (hide your home network)? Same thing say many security researchers/hackers.
Did you change the default password on your router to a strong password? If not, you could be part of the ‘bot army’.
Do you run a VPN on your phone/tablet when traveling and using a public wi-fi spot? If not, your traffic could pretty easily be ‘snooped’ on.
Do you have a strong password on your LAN? If not, it could be relatively easy to breach.
Do you routinely check to see if your router has updated software available? If not, it could be vulnerable to various hacks.
Do you NEVER click on a link in an email, even with email from assumed ‘trusted’ sources? If not, you might have unknowingly downloaded malware.
The list goes on. And this isn’t conspiracy crap, it’s stuff that is possible, and some of it easily done by that computer-smart kid next door. As the ‘connected culture’ has become ubiquitous, a (large?) part of the population simply takes it for granted and doesn’t really understand all of the vulnerabilities, and some of those who do have at least a minor understanding of some of the dangers choose convenience over safety anyway.
But, after my long-winded mini rant, to answer your question, yes, I do. I have my phone with me pretty much all the time, and I have ‘Hey Siri’ active all the time.Dec 16, 2017 at 8:31 pm #3507855
” I have my phone with me pretty much all the time”
“Although the science is still evolving, there are concerns among some public health professionals and members of the public regarding long-term, high use exposure to the energy emitted by cellphones,”
“The current guidelines are a bit more extensive than the 2015 draft, including more steps on how to avoid radio frequency exposure. They include keeping your cellphone off your body, keeping it away from your bed at night, and removing headsets when not on a call. It also advises not using the phone when the signal is weak and not using your phone to stream music and video or download large files—activities that can increase the amount of radio frequency energy cellphones emit. And it warns people not use products advertised as radio frequency blockers, since some of them might actually raise your exposure levels.”
Ted Kennedy, Beau Biden, and John McCain all had/have a type of cancer that might have been caused by cell phones, and they were all heavy cell phone users. Newer technology isn’t as bad…Dec 16, 2017 at 8:53 pm #3507859
“The California Department of Public Health officially issued a guidance Friday on how to reduce exposure to radio-frequency energy released by cell phones—despite a lack of solid scientific data suggesting that such exposure poses any harm.” (Boldface mine)
“The main concern by some public health researchers is that radio-frequency energy from cell phones may cause cancers, particularly brain cancers. Yet there’s no clear mechanism that would justify this concern. Radio-frequency energy is non-ionizing electromagnetic radiation, which doesn’t have enough energy to remove electrons from atoms. It is not known to damage DNA or cause cancerous mutations. It’s only clear potential harm is causing heat, which could lead to burns. That said, most people would notice if their phone was burning their head.”
“Still, some researchers are convinced that the radiation may pose a cancer risk. A few small epidemiological studies (involving around 1,000 people) and two studies done in France and Sweden suggested a link between high cell phone use and a higher risk of brain cancers. But other small studies failed to replicate the results, finding no link to cancer. These include two done in the US.
Additionally, three larger epidemiological studies, involving tens of thousands of cell phone users across 13 countries, found no link between use and cancers.”
I’m not worried.Dec 16, 2017 at 9:03 pm #3507862
yeah, I’m not worried either but I use phone in speaker mode and hold it away from my head, but that’s just for convenience as much as anything
maybe I should just keep away from California : )Dec 17, 2017 at 3:45 pm #3507959
A UC Berkeley professor recently won a lawsuit claiming that California isn’t doing enough to regulate radiation from cellphones
California’s warning about cellphones was issued after this lawsuit
So, the problem isn’t so much California Department of Public Health issuing bogus warnings as the court system makes decisions not scientifically based
Regardless, if I used a cellphone all the time I would probably try not to hold it next to my head all the timeDec 19, 2017 at 2:52 pm #3508304
A better story about this – there may be a small risk of getting brain cancer from cell phone usage:
“People have long been concerned about radiation from cellphones, but none of the research has persuasively or credibly made the case that the low levels of radiation emitted from personal electronic devices pose a threat to human health.
This is a response to concerns that have been expressed to us, over and over again, by the general public,” said Dr. Karen Smith, director of the California Department of Public Health, who described the document as an alert rather than a warning.
“Our response is, if you have a concern, here are some very practical things you can do.”
In fact, a previous version of the document had been released after a court order ― not because California’s public health officials thought that people should be warned about risks.”
“So far, most population-based studies in thousands of people over several years don’t show that more cellphone use leads to more brain tumors, although a study in Sweden did find that people who had used a mobile phone for over 25 years had threefold higher odds of developing brain cancer. However, the American Cancer Society notes that this Swedish study is not definitive, as most other studies have not come to the same conclusions, and Sweden did not experience a rise in the rate of brain tumors over the course of the research.”Dec 19, 2017 at 5:10 pm #3508319
Ken T.BPL Member
At only a couple of calls a week I won’t lose sleep over this.
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