Edward Snowden, now living in Russia, still manages to hit the news. The former National Security Agency contractor has designed a smartphone case that can presumably help users avoid being monitored. The product was co-designed with the famous hacker “Bunnie” Huang.
The device is called “Introspection Engine” and it is a one-of-a-kind smartphone case that Edward Snowden hopes to help journalists figure out if they have been put under surveillance. Being put under surveillance can have deadly consequences, as a reporter’s phone can become a tracking device for a kill squad.
The duo is now developing this innovative tool to help journalists monitor whether their smartphones have been imperiled with to make compromising radio transmissions. Journalists require having their phones upon them at all times to stay in touch with their sources and with their publishers. “We have to ensure that journalists can investigate and find the truth, even in areas where governments prefer they don’t,” said Snowden.
The Introspection Engine is non-existent yet, but the two are eager to get started on it. The team’s prototype uses an iPhone 6 because it is presumably a reporter’s favorite. The case, once connected to the phone, can show if the device is giving away valuable information when a connection (cellular, Wi-Fi, or Bluetooth) is used to receive or send data.
The Introspection Engine would then alert the smartphone’s owner when radio signals are being sent. Even turning on the airplane mode cannot squelch a phone’s radio traffic. However, installing the introspection case on the phone can only be done by a technician because it requires modifying the device.
The next step for the duo is to develop a working prototype that should be complete sometime next year. Snowden and Huang are currently on a “shoestring budget”, so it might take a while until we are actually presented with a functional anti-spying smartphone case and not just the idea behind it.
If all works for the best for Snowden and his partner, the two might rely on Freedom of the Press Foundation for funding in order to develop a supply chain. Then, smartphones installed with the Introspection Engine could be distributed to members of the press who work in very dangerous environments.
IMAGE SOURCE: newstaggr.com