This has been quite the week for Tech news with Big Tech lowering their Iron Fist on any opinions with which they don’t agree.  Social Media censorship is here and it has taught us that if you want to communicate freely you cannot and must not use their platforms or services.  I will introduce you to a new service that is out of their control and completely decentralized — like the original internet. Plus we will talk about Elon Musk, What’sApp and More so be sure to Listen in.

For more tech tips, news, and updates, visit – CraigPeterson.com.

Tech Articles Craig Thinks You Should Read:

WhatsApp gives users an ultimatum: Share data with Facebook or stop using the app

Insurrectionists’ social media presence gives feds an easy way to ID them

Elon Musk is the world’s richest person

What to expect from the first-ever virtual CES

Google, Apple, and Amazon bans Parler

Mastodon is the Only Open Social Network Remaining

Malware Developers Refresh Their Attack Tools

How the Shady Zero-Day Sales Game Is Evolving

Automated Machine-Generated Transcript:

Craig Peterson: [00:00:00] Hi. Hey everybody. Craig Peterson here. Thanks for joining me. We’re going to talk about that. WhatsApp. What are the alternatives to WhatsApp that you might want to use to have private communications? We’re going to talk about zero day attacks. This is a very big deal, particularly for us regular users and businesses and what.

Does that mean to you? What does that mean to me? The whole thing about in these insurrectionists on social media, what happened down at the white house? Not the white house, but excuse me. The Capitol building. And what are the federal and local police doing to track down the people they are using tech, which should not come as a surprise to anybody.

Ilan Musk is the world’s richest person. Now we’ll go into a little bit about him and what’s going on. We are in the middle of the virtual CES. This is the first time that consumer electronic show has been virtual because of the lock. Down. They couldn’t have all of these people out in Vegas. I can’t imagine what the finances are like in Vegas right now.

 That place has to be destroyed. Oh my gosh. What’s been going on. People just aren’t going out there. I was listening this morning to an interview with the head of the Manchester, Boston Regional Airport. And he was saying that, they had a peak, during the holidays, people were traveling no matter what the advice was, and they had a decent time of it.

They were able to handle the volume. But now that those travel days are over with we’re just basically Thanksgiving and then around Christmas, they’re now seeing just a glut. Because nobody’s going to Vegas. Right now they’d be pretty busy. Today they probably wouldn’t because most people will be in Vegas for the consumer electronic show, but they built up Vegas, Las Vegas in order to handle this show.

It’s the second biggest show in the world and the largest consumer show in the world. And it’s not even happening this year. At least not the way it’s happened in years past. I’m so glad I’m not out there. I used, I loved going to Vegas. I really did, because you could do people watching. I’d usually bring a roll of nickels and it’s hard to find the nickel slot machines, I’d blow every nickel I had that was running joke of mine for a few decades.

Yeah. Boring guy. 

But the rest of the time I was watching people enjoying the restaurant. I loved walking around Vegas. Absolutely loved it. It was so much fun because it’s just an exciting place to be. But now, Oh my gosh.

We have some clients out in Vegas, a medical client actually. We will have to comply with the HIPAA regulations and all of these, obviously that’s part of what we do, is hip hop because we help businesses with their regulatory burdens. And I saw a mountain Vegas and we were taking care of this client and we just hop over to this trip. And in talking with them, some of these different clients out there, none of them go to the strip. If you’re a resident, you just don’t go.

Unless you’re going to meet a friend from out of town and you go to a great restaurant. And I remember this last time I was out there, we went to Like it was Gordon Ramsey’s new restaurant at the time, and it was a kind of an English pub theme. And I had, smashed peas and bangers and potatoes.

I forget what they called the potatoes. But that’s for those of us who speak American English, it’s sausages and peas and potatoes. It was actually very good. What’s happening now because so many of these restaurants are shut down the casinos?

We just had a major casino owner just passed away this week as well. What’s going to happen there? 

So CES. It was what kept that whole economy really in the black frankly, and it’s not even happening. So we’ll, anyways, we’ll talk a little bit about what’s happening out there at the first ever Virtual Consumer Electronic show.

And if you don’t hear it, make sure you go check it out. Online. Craig peterson.com got lots of great stuff there. For you a Google banning parlor from the Android app store. We’re going to talk a little bit about that. What does it mean? Not just Google. Of course now we have Apple has banned them from their app store.

We’ve got Amazon who’s kicked them off of their platform. We actually know a fair amount about this right now, but where are things going? How the biggest decentralized social network is dealing with its Nazi problem. We’ll talk a little bit if we can get to it today, but about something called Mastodon. And I’m going to probably try and bring a Mastodon server up online, and it’s designed for your own social network and these servers can tie together and each server can have its own standards in a way people can say and do and whatever online. 

And Gab, which is where a lot of the people have gone that have been disaffected from Twitter and other places, and Gab had kicked them off. And so they went over to Mastodon and of course, Gab’s has been having problems now, too. I guess a president just opened a gab account, just Gab, gab.com this week for people to follow him.

We’ll see how that works out. It’s just incredible. I mentioned this week on the air. I’m want, I consider myself anyways to be a, I’m the regionalist particularly here when we’re talking about the internet and internet originalists. I firmly believe that the internet was intended to be just a free and open place, not just for exchanging ideas, which is.

Ultimately incredibly important. And it’s so important that I think the only real way to solve problems isn’t to find a new energy source or whatever it might be. I think that ultimately. It’s the human mind, the human intellect, that is the most valuable resource on earth because we’ve been able to solve every problem that has come along.

So having this ability to communicate was what we saw the internet capable of back in the early 1980s, and then in the nineties. And when Berners Lee came out with the concept with NCSA, Mosaic of the web browser was just, Oh my gosh, that’s just brilliant. Again, it was a simple step, but a brilliant idea that he was able to implement and he gave us the web.

And I was just so excited then, because what I thought was, what would happen is we would all be able to communicate and we’d see each other’s ideas. And at the time the internet was probably about 90, 95% conservative, because remember where it came from, it was all of us working on government funded projects, many in universities.

But we were libertarian, we were conservative and this is going to be wonderful. We’re going to get our libertarian message out about government control. In fact, I had a signature back in the day that I wrote a little bit of code in order to generate a new signature. Every time an email went out and it had all of these NSA buzzwords in it.

I was going to solve this problem all by myself by just making the NSA monitor my email. Now the stupid things we do is kids. But that’s what we were seeing. We were originalist. This was just so exciting. So you had the free speech part of it, but you also have the freedom of development of you taking your ideas.

Finally, now you could connect with anyone in the world, anything in the world. Ultimately, of course we couldn’t when it first started, right? How many of us were on the internet? My node is listed on some of those early maps of the internet. It’s fun. Look at it. Oh, there I am. That’s me. That was my machine. That was my company. That’s what I was doing at the time. 

Looking at it today. That excitement that we had of being able to develop software and new protocols and new technologies. And we weren’t even thinking about competition because there was no competition. It was just a wonderful time to what we have today.

We’ve got our friends primarily at Facebook and Twitter, but also at Google, but maybe Facebook and Twitter are some of the worst offenders I’m going to lump Google into. Okay. But where we had all of these people, having free conversations and disagreeing with each other about political things and technological things and ways to move forward and how much security do we need, and should we be sending these commands in-line as just text real texts that you could read?

Just like the protocol that runs our email today. It says, hello, literally. Hello. When it connects. Nowadays the more advanced version say E H L O, but anyways you send real text commands to the machine so people could watch what was going on and debug it and figure things out. And talking about email, our email servers, the earlier versions of sendmail that we had were set up so that a remote person could get onto your server without your knowledge or permission even, and fix a configuration problem and debug a problem. 

Think of that world, what that world was like. It was so exciting. We were in on something that just had never, ever happened before. And what Facebook and Twitter have done is completely turned the tables on this whole thing.

And I’m going to tell you what they did to turn the tables and we’ll get into also what is going on with social networking? Where is it ultimately going to end up at? So we’ve got a lot to talk about today and I hope that you can stick around and pick up on all of this stuff.

How did we get there from here? Really don’t know. I’m my head’s still spinning, but here’s, what’s happened. You had Facebook start and Facebook’s whole business model is to have you be the product.

You’ve heard this a million times before. And so Google. Oh, and Facebook and Twitter all want you to use their services. And they’re going to, you pay the highest bidder for you, right? For your eyeballs. Okay. That’s all fine. I understand that. But in order for them to make more money, what do you have to do?

As a business person, you know what you have to do, either get more customers, you have to increase the volume of purchases by the customers you have, or perhaps you need to increase your prices or cut your costs. There’s only so many metrics that are available to a business. Two that you can manipulate in order to really come out.

I had to have the game so that you can create more jobs and more opportunity for people by hiring them. If Facebook is going to be able to sell your information to more people, they need you on the platform for longer periods of time. That basically gives them more product to offer. Again, remember you are the product.

So if they’re going to try and keep you on Facebook, what are they going to do? They have on staff, all kinds of psychiatrists, psychologists, and sociologists who try and figure out how to really pull your strings. That’s what they want. They want you on there. They’re going to have colors that are designed to keep you on the website.

Again, going back to the Vegas thing from the prior segment, you go into Las Vegas and do a casino and you are going to be completely oblivious as to what time of day it is. You have no idea. There aren’t any windows. The light is always the same. The flooring the weird patterns they have in the carpets on the floors are designed to slightly disorient.

You. So you’re just sitting there playing the slots, getting free booze, because that’s going to keep you playing because you don’t make the best decisions when you are on the tipsy side. You are not going to be an effective gambler. Get, you might stay there all night and you have no idea.

Use your Apple watch in order to remind you when you should be leaving right, or whatever, watch out. The same types of things have gone into all of these social media sites. And now one of the things that they have found out is if you get pissed off, if you’re very angry at something, you are going to leave.

Now you may just go and do something else because you’re so upset, right? You’re steaming over. You’re boiling. You might leave the site permanently, just so many Twitter users have done thousands of them here after president Trump. Had decided he wasn’t going to post because he couldn’t on Twitter anymore.

And moved over to Gab.com, as I mentioned. So what should they do? They want more product. They need more eyeballs that they can sell. So they’re going to show you things that you want to see that are going to keep you on their site. So they’re going to upset you. Yeah they want to upset you because if you are a little upset, you’re going to pay more attention, right?

Your eyeballs are going to be drawn in as it were. So they’re going to show you things that effectively you want to see, but it’s really more than that. It’s really, they’ve got to get your hormones flowing to such a degree at such a level that you are going to stay on this site. And you’re going to share content with your friends and.

You’re going to comment on a tweet and they’re going to show it to the people that it’s really going to upset in, but not so much that they’re going to get off of the site for the day, but enough that they’re going to want to jump in because their opinion matters. And in reality on these social media sites your opinion really doesn’t matter that much, right?

None of us are as important as we think, like to think we are. So they have sucked you in. And how many times have we seen people who are stuck in these sites all day long? They have a spare moment. They are just flipping through headlines and those headlines are designed to get you. To stick on the site to share stuff.

That’s what it’s designed for. I didn’t see that common. I really didn’t and a really good friend of mine. He pointed out something the other day, cause he was asking about, what’s the ultimate outcome going to be of what we’ve seen with president Trump and. Social media and banning conservatives, et cetera, et cetera.

And so we had a great little chat about that and he pointed out Craig, normally you don’t think this way. I don’t think like the people that are trying to shut us up. I don’t think like the people that are trying to take control, I’m I am not a socialist. I’m not a national socialist.

Also called Nazi the German word for national socialists. I’m not a communist, which is again, an international socialist. You notice they’re all socialists. And I just think everybody should have reasonable freedoms. Obviously we need laws and the right for me to swing my fist, stops somewhere before your nose.

 And I understand all of that and I believe firmly in all of that. And I was raised remember in a socialist country that there has discussions about some of this stuff. 

But I really am very libertine I think is maybe the way to put it because you have the Libertarian party, the uppercase L. I am a lowercase L I think that people have the right to privacy, for instance, which used to be something that the Democrat party talked about.

And that used to be something the Democrat party cared about. But now with these massive businesses, That want your eyeballs that are keeping your eyeballs, it’s all changed. And part of the reason it’s all changed. And this is what I explained to my friend is if you’re a big company, you don’t want competition, right?

So you get Facebook buying Instagram, you get Facebook buying WhatsApp because they were competition to them. What’s another great way to get rid of competition if you don’t have any morals? And we know from all of the stories we’ve seen about Zuckerberg and how he stole photos from Harvard university of all of the co-eds that were there and put them up and had people rating their them based on their looks. That story would tell us the Zuckerberg doesn’t have those morals, but if you don’t have any morals and you have enough money to get the attention of Congress or State legislatures, then what can you do? And I think that’s where our problem has come in. Frankly, these guys want legislation. 

So when we get back, I’ll tell you why I think they want this legislation. Why they want the types of enforcement they have, because many times you might be scratching your head.

I know I used to do saying why would this company be lobbying for legislation to regulate themselves? I think there’s a pretty simple answer here.

I mentioned how I am an intranet originalist because I was around in the days of the founding of the internet. Absolutely. So I was looking forward to all of this freedom, to all of this open space, to the ability to communicate back and forth with anybody, to be able to develop applications, whatever I needed to do, whatever I might want to do.

It was just an incredible day. Incredible time to where we’re at today. So you have these big businesses, Facebook and others who are doing the nasty, frankly, where they are controlling us. They really are because they’re controlling the content we see, and we are no longer able to distinguish between something that is being fed to us.

Because they think it’ll keep us on the site longer. They think it’ll make us talk about an article or something. And the difference between that and something maybe we need to see, which is most likely an opposing opinion now, just because there’s an opposing opinion doesn’t mean that it’s a worthwhile opinion, right?

There are some seriously crazy people out there, but we’re not making that decision anymore. That decision is being made by the tech tyrant and the tech tyrant’s love to have government intervene. If the tech titans, the Facebooks and Googles and Twitters of the world can get the government to put various controls in place because “in  this industry, we have not done a great job of controlling ourselves. So we need the government to control us.”

 When the government starts “controlling,” it’s quote unquote, right? These big tech giants and puts rules and regulations in place saying thou shall do this thou shalt not do that. We all chair many of us anyways, chair. And we cheer because the problem solved.

And of course, as we know, anytime government quote “solves” unquote, a problem they’ve created three, four, five, six other problems. So government loves it because there’s more problems to solve, but the original problem was never solved, but here’s the trick. These tech tyrants or tyrants of other kinds, we’ll talk about some others in just a minute, are now under new regulations. But they can afford those regulations. Who cannot afford to comply with those regulations? It’s a little guy, isn’t it? The small companies is small startups. That, that I was so excited were coming our way because we had this new internet technology.

This wonderful tech that was going to change our lives. Those companies are squashed. They’re stepped on. They are little gnats that are flying about their heads that are now starved because they can’t comply. Now, let me give you an example. 

I deal with regulatory compliance. My business is all about cyber security right now. We’re not a law firm. I don’t give legal advice, but I help them comply. And how do I help them comply? We’ll go in and we’ll do audits on their networks. Figure out what it is that needs to be done on their network. How can that work? What problems might we have? What problems might they have and then move forward right to the next step.

And that is solve the problems. Just this week we delivered a case of paper to one of our clients. Now this is a moderately small client there. They’re not huge. They are considered a small business by the Small Business Administration. So they’re not a particularly big customer or business, but here’s, what’s happened in their industry.

There are rules called CMMC, which are based on some National Institutes of Standards and Technology requirements or guidelines that were put in place. And anyone that manufacturers anything or provides anything to the federal government has to comply with these rules. And compliance is very expensive.

We’re talking a half, a million dollars upfront for a small business. And then if you really are complying probably about 300,000 a year, if you’re trying to do it all yourself, okay. Very expensive. 

Now I look at these cybersecurity rules and say you know to me anyways, being a cybersecurity guy, these are legitimate, they’re reasonable. But most of these small companies are looking at it and say it’s easy enough for one of these major contractors that you probably heard, their names is places like Boeing or BAE. And those types of places it’s easy enough for them to comply because they’ve got great profit margins and they have thousands of people working for them.

Tens of thousands. It’s easy for them. It’s hard for us. So we delivered. A case of printed paper, where we had gone through and written up all of the documentation necessary for them to comply with the CMMC rules. Now this documentation set that we wrote up for them is, as you can guess, Thousands and thousands of pages long, and it’s all stuff that they’re supposed to comply with. And it goes into every level. What should happen from the physical security, which the fed call ITAR all the way through the computer security and password changes. When should they happen, et cetera, et cetera. And this is a $50,000 project. How is a small company going to be shelling out this kind of money?

Now we try and make it easy for them because we will rent them the equipment as opposed to sell them equipment. And we’ll, we will do the documentation for them at this cost because the 50,000 frankly, is cheap. If they had done it themselves it would have been closer to 200,000. But because we do it for so many businesses and so much of it, the same.

 we’re able to give it to them at a savings, but how can a small business comply with all these regulations? A startup business comply. It’s very difficult. If not impossible to be able to comply with this stuff. And there are some market opportunities for us that we’re pursuing where they, these customers are actually using our systems in order to help stay safe.

And I think that might be a good way for them to get around that initial quarter million, half a million dollar investment in upgrades that they have to do. But it makes it difficult to enter the market, right? Investors they’re always looking at what’s the barrier to entry here for potential competitors?

If you can get the federal government’s ear, if you are a big contractor, you can get regulations put in place that you could comply with. No problem. I’ll just add it onto my bill, which they were able to do by the way. If the regulations were written so they could bill it back to the federal government, but for various reasons, very small businesses and startups just cannot bill it back. How’s that for our scary situation? 

We don’t like the fact that frankly, Google Facebook, Amazon, Twitter, you name any of these big companies. We don’t like the fact that they are able to control the market that they’re in. Now we had this whole antitrust system set up, you might remember the robber barons and what they were doing, which was just totally immoral and really hurt a lot of people a hundred years ago.

This is the modern version of the robber barons. If you can’t beat them, join them. And as I mentioned in the last segment .   They love the regulations and the regulations love them. 

Now, the reason I say the regulations love them is because the regulators love them.

Mel Brooks. You remember with the the movie, it was just absolutely fantastic. And they’re all sitting around the table with the Governor and they’re talking about their phony baloney jobs. That’s really what so many of these regulations are. Do we really need them, do we really need all of these laws?

And the answer is obviously no. We just cut back on tons of regulations, tens of thousands of regulations that were just absolutely not needed, but the regulators love it. 

If you are a regulator and you are sitting behind a desk and you’d like to earn more money. And of course, who wouldn’t like to make a few extra bucks, and maybe take a vacation for once. But you’re sitting behind a desk as a regulator. How are you going to justify a higher salary? Obviously more work would help justify that. And you’re probably looking, as part of that raise to maybe move up the ladder. In order to move up the ladder and manage people, you have to have more people.

So the more work you can make for yourself and for your department, so that the department has to grow, the better, the chance of you being able to move up the ladder and get that extra salary bump. You see how that works. I know you guys. You’re the best and brightest and you’re like me. We don’t think that way, but many regulators do think that way.

And I know there’s some great, honest people out there that are trying to do the right thing. We work with a number of State organizations from school districts to counties. We’ve done it for years to State governments, in fact, and we always try and do the right thing, but the tendency. The gravity is towards these regulatory agencies growing and just grabbing more and more power and authority so that they can justify more and more.

And the big companies don’t actually really complain about it much because that helps them keep the small guys out. That’s what I’ve been talking about. They don’t want those small guys. They don’t want the startups. They don’t want what the internet had so much hope and opportunity held out for.

They want to stay in their phony baloney positions as well at the head of some of these things. So they’ve made it very difficult for us to get in. Then on the state and local level, look at what’s happened. Again, government likes to control government likes to regulate, which is controlled. That’s what it’s all about.

Remember, regulator was the brand name for a clock because it helped to regulate the time. Ball was the first watch. That was good enough for the railroad to keep track of time. And we have our time zones today because of the railroad, nothing to do with what the real time of day is. If we were at noon, when the sun was high overhead, when it was directly overhead, we’d have an even amount of time in the afternoon as we do in the morning.

In other words, the sun would rise at 8:00 AM and set at 8:00 PM. But that doesn’t happen. Does it? And that’s all because of regulation or just because of the railroad who was huge at the time. So State and local think about the licenses that are required in so many places. Do we really need to have a business license?

Did you know, Singapore does not require business licenses. They hardly have any licenses. In fact, in Singapore, and they have one of the best economies in the world and have had for a very long time, because a simple idea might be a great idea, but it might not work in the real world. Look at the numbers coming out of the small business administration.

Most businesses fail. 

And the best way to fail is to fail fast before you spend all of your money, your savings. Hopefully you have something after this whole lockdown, but that’s the best way to figure out if an business idea is a good one. Failed. You got to try it, but if you have to have a license from the town for the business, you have to have an occupancy permit for the office space.

You have to have an, a license to run it out of your house nowadays, right? Because we’re working from home and then consider things like a license for a hairdresser for a barber really. Really you need a license for that? It is great because it keeps people out of the business. It keeps the number of barbers down, the number of hairdressers down there aren’t as many because you need a license, but do we really need a license for that?

So I wanted to use that as a lower end example because barbershops and hair salons tend to be much, much smaller than trillion dollar companies. So we have to be very careful about our tendencies growing up, my father and my mother, they would continually say, ah, there ought to be a law about that.

Really do we need a law? How long has murder being illegal? Go back to British common law where a lot of our laws started from anyways. It was illegal. Then it was illegal to cheat somebody out of something. It was illegal to do these various things, but the lawyers, the whole law community has built it up.

Along with the politicians, so that everything’s become incredibly complicated, which benefits who again, does it really benefit you? If someone cheats you? Those laws had been on the books since the Magna Carta. Okay? So do we really need to have a specific law about cheating on the internet using this type of achieved against this type of a person that applies to this type of a company?

Really? Do we really need that? Isn’t that what the whole courts were about is to interpret the law. We have come so far from our founding. And I’m referring to the internet here, not just the country, but it applies to both. So we are now faced with this problem of the internet and these mega-monopolies effectively, when you control 60% of the online servers and data processing storage that’s pretty much a monopoly and that’s the position Amazon is in right now.

How do you get rid of those monopolies while we’ve tried legislatively before? But those laws don’t work. They’ve worked a way around those laws. They’ve said, okay, we’re going to actually use the laws to protect our monopoly. And they go to the government and they say, Hey we want to buy Instagram or we want to buy WhatsApp.

And we’re not gaining any sort of a monopoly position by doing this because we do have laws in place that require these big companies to go before a federal bureaucracy who by the way, is going to regulate them and has that additional incentive hidden away in their back pocket.

If we have this bigger company here, we can regulate it easier than all of these little companies. So they go and they get permission to buy these competitors. And they were competitors because Instagram was taking those ever valuable eyeballs that are needed by Facebook, away from Facebook.

WhatsApp was taking people away from messenger and WhatsApp was great at the time because it was end to end encrypted used MarlinSpike’s algorithms. It just was a nice little product. But Facebook already had a competing product called Messenger, and yet they were able to buy it anyways and become bigger and get more regulations in place, which keeps the small guys out.

It keeps the best ideas, ideas we never saw because frankly they never saw the light of day. So how could we see them? Are you willing to put all of this money into something and find out there’s all these regulations in your way where you have to hire a company like mine and hire me because you need to do an audit.

You need to comply with the HIPAA regulations. You need to comply with these CMMC regulations. And in some cases it makes sense. And I got to say, I think in most cases I’ve seen these regulations do nothing but preserve and create monopolies. So not that I have an opinion on the matter, but I thought it was while in these turbulent times to explain what I think is going on.

And these calls for further regulations I think are going to ultimately have the exact opposite effect. That these new regulations that people are calling for more regulations from the FTC, from the FCC  Pitt and PI I should say and company did not do enough regulations. They got rid of regulations.

And we don’t have free speech that gamer, he can’t get internet cheap because he’s using a lot of internet compared to what that granny next door who wants to send a nice picture of her cat or get pictures of the grandkids. She has to pay the same as him. That’s what they want. That’s what they want.

And I think it’s going to be destructive 

Let’s talk about secure communications right now. And I’m talking about talking to your kids at school or grandkids, or, any type of communication you might want to have, including of course, business communication that you want to be.

Relatively / reasonably secure. You can’t expect to using just regular hardware to have military grade security. It’s just not reasonable. Apple went to all of the trouble and they got their iPhone certified for certain types of data. And I think it’s great that they did because it’s helping all of us.

But in, in, unless you are a spy working for a foreign government or something, Really these things are going to work for you. So when the number one out there is an app called WhatsApp and it is an app that was designed using a very good base. There’s a guy out there by the name of MarlinSpike.

Probably not the name he was born with. And he designed a end-to-end state-of-the-art encryption mechanism. And it was used, it still is used in an app called Signal. And another app called WhatsApp. I got about a week ago, a notification on WhatsApp because we use WhatsApp for a mastermind group on men.

And the idea is we don’t want people spying in maybe competitors who knows who. And so we wanted something that was secure end to end and remember that’s what zoom was telling us. Yeah. It’s secure end to end. And of course we find out later on that it wasn’t, they were absolutely lying. Big surprise there.

But when we’re talking about secure communications, it has to be end to end. And what that means is you type into your phone for instance, and it’s in the clearer right there on your phone and then the app, whatever it might be will encrypt it. Send it to the remote site. Now we obviously, it’s going to go through a bunch of routers on the internet.

It may end up in a server or two, depending on the app and how it’s written, and then it’ll end up on the other person’s smartphone or desktop, whatever it might be end to end means that anyone in the middle who is capturing the data only sees it as random letters and numbers. That’s the idea behind this.

So it won’t prevent someone from listening in on your conversation because they can certainly listen in, but it will prevent them from listening intelligibly to your conversation. In other words, they’ve got all of the data. It’s encrypted data, it looks like trash and they have it now. Is that any good for people?

Again, it depends on how spy worlds you want to get here? Is it something where knowing that there’s a communication going on means something right there. There’s a lot of stuff you can read into it. How active is it? You might remember in world war II, we were listening to German communications and you could tell something’s ramping up here because we’ve got more units, transmitting unit codes, and we use that as did our enemies in the war to fool them as well. We had pretended we had a whole tank divisions that didn’t actually exist as well as various other things. So secure communications means a lot of things, but when we’re talking end to end, all it means is  when you send it is basically garbage one is being transmitted. And then it’s in the clear when it arrives at the far side. So that’s end to end communications what app has had and then communications encrypted, which is why people have been using it. If you listen to the first hour, you heard me complaining about Facebook and how they’ve been buying their competition, and then the competition that they can’t buy that doesn’t even exist yet.

Before it gets started, they’ve been using government regulations to suppress them and make sure they just don’t become competitors. One of the apps that was bought by Facebook, because it was taken away a lot of eyeballs, is called WhatsApp. It’s a messaging app. It has, or at least used to have privacy coded into the way it was designed.

Now, Facebook owning it means who knows if it still does. We don’t have the source code that Facebook is using, who knows what they’ve gotten into it, but we’re talking about 2 billion users. Worldwide. And I got this message from WhatsApp saying that if I don’t concede to these new terms of service, I’m not going to be able to use WhatsApp anymore.

While these terms of service include. And I had to look at this and now I have it up on my screen right now. They are changing WhatsApp service and the way they process your data, how businesses can use Facebook hosted services to store and manage. There are WhatsApp client chats, how they partner with Facebook to offer integrations across the Facebook company products.

So guess what that all means. And they said, if you don’t agree to this by February 8th, you will no longer be able to use WhatsApp. Now remember they paid $19 billion for WhatsApp in 2014, and it’s really going to make you wonder what they were thinking. All right. They have not been making money off of WhatsApp.

They haven’t been able to track you what you’re doing, insert ads, et cetera. And there have been a lot of people over the years who have said to guests, what’s going to happen here. Our friends at Facebook are going to start monetizing WhatsApp. If I paid $19 billion for an app, I’d want a mob monetize it as well.

 This is getting scary in 2016. WhatsApp gave users the ability to pull out of having your account data transferred over to Facebook. So it took them about. Two years after the acquisition to say, okay, now we’re going to grab all of your count data. And now this updated privacy policy is changing.

Everything you will no longer have that choice. Like you had four years ago. So some of the data that WhatsApp collects is going to be available and open to Facebook. So that includes user phone numbers, other people’s phone numbers that are stored in your address. Book, profile names, profile pictures, status messages, indicating when you were last online diagnostic data collected from app blogs.

Now. The diagnostic data can tell them a lot. And it isn’t just used to fix broken programs. This diagnostic data oftentimes contains things like passwords or user account names, other websites that you visit. It’s got. Just a ton of stuff. So under these new terms, Facebook is saying they have the right to share all of this data with its family of companies.

So think about what that means. They’ve got the Facebook payments. Family member. And part of the reason that they’re probably doing this is Facebook really wants to get in the money business. You might remember. We talked last year about how Facebook wants to have their own cryptocurrency and manage it.

So be careful here they have the right to collect purchase information, your financial information, location, contacts, user content. So what should you use? I’m not going to delve into more about what this problem is. I think it should be pretty obvious. If you want something that’s quick and easy to use.

If you’re following in my advice so far, you’re using an iPhone because that is your best bet, generally speaking out there right now. And when it comes to security and even for some of these regulated industries that we serve with these services, like doing the documentation. Fixing up networks doing audits, all of that sort of stuff.

It’s good for them too. It works for them. And on your iPhone and also your Macs. There’s something called I message. And I message is end to end encrypted. And Apple is not using it for advertising. It is not using it for your financial transactions and spying on you. Okay.  You had another reason to use your iPhone.

If you’re on an Android, we’ve got something for you here in a minute as well. So iPhone problem with iPhone and iMessage is, the recipient has to have an iPhone or a Mac in order for it to be encrypted. So what do I recommend overall? I use I message when I want something easy, maybe talking to family members and I use Signal it’s called Signal messenger.

It’s fantastic. It is end to end. It is what. The pros you, so check it out.

you are not hearing the truth. The algorithms at Facebook and Twitter and every other place was social media.

Those programs are not designed to show you the truth. They’re just designed to manipulate you. And I explained what that was all about, how it works and why. So if you missed that, make sure you check out the podcast, CraigPeterson.com/podcast, and you’ll see them all there. Or just in your favorite podcast app, just search for Craig Peterson.

You should be able to find it that way. We have had a lot of turmoil lately and I chalk a lot of it, much much of it to the social media sites that are out there because these social media sites are doing a disservice. By dividing us up even further. They are just letting us know things they think we want to know and you know what, they’re not wrong.

We do want to know those things and it gets to be a problem certainly. But how do you deal with that problem? Yeah. I was just thinking of the sound of music. When I said that you can deal with this problem in a number of different ways, but social media is not helping the matter at all. These people that broke into the Capitol building on Wednesday, we’re not very subtle about what they were doing.

There were filming themselves, actively tweeting, actively posting things on Instagram, on and on. And they were uploading them to websites. It was pretty obvious where they were and many people, of course, they don’t know how to, I don’t maybe, maybe you don’t know, but the photos you take, the videos you take, they have information embedded into them that tells you where and when the photo was taken.

That frankly is a huge problem for these people. So law enforcement agencies are now trying to track down these people. They’re calling insurrectionists who have  done things that I guess you could call a bit of an insurrection. The Washington DC attacks seem to have been mostly conservative people that may have gotten caught up.

There could be people who were embedded into the crowd just to rile them up and get them in and get them going. Many of these BLM and Antifa protests, of course they are actively burning and looting and mugging and shooting. It there’s a huge difference here, but in both cases, local police and the FBI are trying to find out who these people were. 

I got an email from the FBI earlier in the week where the FBI was asking, Hey here are some posters that we put together and we’re trying to identify these people in it. It had what they had identified as kind of leaders of what was going on. They had pictures of them.

And of course, people have been reporting them and saying who it is because they were allegedly actively instigating violence. There were thousands of photos also in videos taken by some of the media who were on site. But several police departments here recently, like my Miami, Philadelphia, and New York city of Portland, Seattle they’ve turned to facial recognition platforms.

Now, in some cases, these cities have said it’s illegal, but the police have been using it. And one of them is something we talked about last week and that’s this clear view. A I. We’ve got to keep an eye on that one clear view, AI, for those who don’t remember, maybe you haven’t heard of it before is a company that went online and against the policies of these websites scraped all of the pictures.

It could find. And scraping in this case means downloading the photographs. So they downloaded them. They put them into a database. There were billions, as I recall of these photos, and then they had some facial recognition software they were using to try and figure out who’s who there. Now they use this for these demonstrations by the BLM and the Antifa people.

And they were able to find a lot of the people and arrest them and charge them. So they used in Philadelphia , Again protest footage against Instagram photos to identify and arrest restaurant protestor there in November. The Washington post reported that investigators from 14 local and federal agencies in the DC area used it more than 12,000 times since 2019. So over a two year period, and they haven’t disclosed who it was, et cetera. And in many cases they odd few skate where they got the photo from the, this is a technique that the police department have been using more recently, like over the last decade or two, where. They don’t want to disclose the way they found out about something.

And a good example of that are these stingray devices, which are fake mobile towers that the police will put in place. Now they’re not a tower, it’s a mobile, it’s a a cellular site. And so any phone that comes within that cell sites area is going to link up to the stingray device.

And then the stingray device is going to monitor everything going through it, which means, by the way, remember your text messages, your SMS messages can all be grabbed by a stingray device, which is really a huge problem. So they were trying to hide the source of the stingray as being the source, because they didn’t want to reveal that these stingray, these fake cell sites they were using were actually in use that they even existed.

They were denying even the existence for a long time. And eventually we found out, yeah, that’s what. They were doing until that’s over with. But anyways, what they do oftentimes when they don’t want to reveal the source is they’ll lie about it. So they’ll use that source, like a stingray device to identify someone, and then they’ll go the next step and investigate that person a little bit and try and find something else and say yeah.

Someone at this diner reported this person, or we were at this diner having lunch, and we saw this person walk in knowing full well that the only reason they’re there they’re at that diner, which is 20 miles off of their beat, if you will, was because the stingray device had grabbed that person’s phone number and they knew that they had been communicating and in fact, maybe planning some operation. Or another. Okay. So they’ll lie about the source and we’ve seen that again and again many times. So the law enforcement now is using also something called geo-fence warrants. And they take them to companies like Google who is collecting data on us and where we are.

If you have an Android phone, it’s guaranteed, the Google is tracking you. So one of these geo-fence warrant is issued saying, I want to know. Everyone that was within this area. That’s geo fences and they will look in their database and check and see, okay. Who was in that area at that time. And then they’ll give it.

This list of all mobile devices that were within that geographic carrier during the given time, they’ll give it to law enforcement, then we’ve seen how people have been arrested and even charged for no good reason other than they got caught up in one of these geo-fence warrants. 

Now, I don’t want you guys to get the wrong idea here. The reason I’m telling you this is these tools for identifying people are not just in the hands of law enforcement. They are in the hands of bad guys. They’re in the hands of advertisers. They’re in everybody’s hands. Remember Google, their whole business model, is making money off of you by you being the product. So if you are using Google maps, even if it’s on an iPhone, Google knows where you are.

They may not know exactly what you’re doing, but they probably have a pretty good idea. And they’re willing to sell this to absolutely anyone, the data aggregators, the same sort of a thing that free app that you play. Isn’t it fun? Yeah. Yeah. Well, Apple shut down the ability of many of these apps now to track you because that’s how they were paying for themselves.

It wasn’t that, you know, Hey, I made this free app out of the goodness of my heart. Isn’t this wonderful look at this. No, no, no. It’s because they were tracking you. Some of these were even malicious, particularly in the early days of Android screensavers that were downloading everything. It was just, it was crazy what was going on back in the days.

But our social media, the pictures that we’re posted  are available, not just to law enforcement, but to bad guys, nation States like China, uh, Russia, North Korea. Now we’ve got Iran and Vietnam involved in some of these things. And when we’re posting the pictures, some of these sites will remove the geo information from the pictures and the videos. Others do not. 

So be very careful with them, you might want to double check it. And it’s handy sometimes, right? Like you can look at that beautiful trip to Disney world that you talk just by the geo codes on those pictures. Putting it all together. That’s how some of these services, like if you have Amazon and you’re uploading your photos to Amazon, they will put together a little photo book for you because they know, okay, from this day to this day, you were in Disney world and off it goes, and you can make your nice little photo book.

So be very, very careful about this because you, the identities that we have are not so secret and letting all of this stuff go, letting it become effectively public knowledge, I think is potentially a big problem. It isn’t that I have anything to hide. It’s that I have nothing to share. It’s a great concept.

Remember, on, on all of that stuff, people were reporting what they were doing in DC and at these other riots around the country. Including, putting them up on Parler, which is offline, going to be online, probably would be offline. Gab is another big one, Telegram’s, another one. But we gotta be very, very careful.

Okay. Be careful. Uh, there’s home, honey. So many things we could talk about here. It’s it’s just absolutely crazy. Uh, but I want to get into Elon Musk here for a quick minute. He has been absolutely amazing. This man has taken some huge, huge risks. He said moving to the United States was the best move he ever made.

And I can see that. And he says, it’s because of the freedoms we have here. Again, my cautionary tales here about regulation. You got to be very careful. He’s now, Elon Musk, worth more than $180 billion looking at his shares. Isn’t that crazy? And that of course is mostly because of Tesla. He has a lot of great ideas, including he’s got this whole thing about going to Mars and he also has the, uh, the boring company, few other things, including a little thing called Space X, uh, stuff you might’ve heard about before too.

He’s got some amazing rockets, but that is just, just amazing this week, at least on one point, Tesla was valued at almost $800 billion, which is several times more than any other car company. Which means that investors are thinking that Tesla is going to be worth more than any other car company and you know what? I think they’re probably right.

  I think Tesla is going to pretty much own the automobile industry and just a few years from now. Oh. And speaking of that, I don’t know if you saw this, but apparently Apple is in talks right now. The very preliminary stage with Hyundai, who is a huge manufacturer, not just of cars, like the Hyundai and Kia brands, but of ships.

And that’s how I’ve known them too, in the shipping industry. Having some kids in that industry. But think about this just over a year ago, 2020 Musk was only worth 27 billion. It’s just, just absolutely amazing. So Tesla is really winning the game. They have the most miles they have the most cars. Uh, we’ll see, and we’ll see how this goes.

And by the way, mosque is making a lot of his money. From stock options that he gets based on the valuation of the company, which is not a bad way to incentivize these people. I mentioned earlier Parler. It was banned and is banned from the Android store, from the Apple’s store. And also from Amazon, which was a major platform they were using.

We have seen over the last week, a ton of conservatives just being de-platformed and Parler was this free speech app. No, it wasn’t the wild, wild West. They had restrictions on speech and it was clearly spelled out and Parler had committees that would look at things that were questionable. That had been reported. And were we moving things and because of that and the wording in what was said by these trillion dollar tech companies has got Parler now suing them.

So we’ll see how that ends up going. 

But this is just absolutely amazing to me. There is. Or at least there was no true free speech outlet online until Parler came up. Well, recently, right? Until Parley came along, we used to be a lot of free speech online, but you know, it gets, gets a little troublesome sometimes.

 Google, it’s just, it’s incredible what they did here. And what Amazon did. Amazon pulled all of their servers. All of the services Parler was using and knocked it offline. So there are some lawsuits underway, expect more lawsuits over time. We’ll see what happens. 

A lot of  libertarian as well as conservative people have had their platforms yanked. Ron Paul, who has never been one out there saying anything about an insurrection. Ron Paul’s account was also yanked. So it’s, I don’t know. It’s just crazy. What’s going on. Guess we’ll see, keep up, keep watching, keep listening.

Many people have gone over to some other sites like Gab right now is a Twitter replacement and good for them too. Pretty decent Twitter replacement, frankly, but there’s another one out there called Mastodon.

This is really an interesting one. I like it. It’s open source. Everybody can view the source. Anyone can run their own Mastodon server, which I think is just absolutely amazing here. And the idea behind Mastodon is all of these Mastodon servers can talk to each other, can share things so you can have the large conversations, but each server can have its own set of rules.

That’s the part that makes it really interesting. And that’s why I want to try and bring a Mastodon server up on the line

And I am looking for someone right now who loves to correspond to people and do some follow-up because I get a lot of inquiries and I want to make sure that I am getting back to people and getting back to them in a timely manner, because frankly, I get distracted as well . 

So if you are someone that has a question, or if you think you might be able to help, wanna little bit of work and you know, every day to, do some follow-up and some tracking, make sure you just email me me@CraigPeterson.com. I’d absolutely love to hear from you. 

Before the break we were talking about some of these social media sites and how conservative voices have been shut down. What’s interesting is that Gab has picked up a lot of people, including president Trump, but Gab’s had a problem too. 

Gab has been kind of taken over by some of these. People might call them far right. Wingers, but that’s not true. The United States has a different political scale than any other country, really in the world. In the United States, if you are on the right of the political scale. The far right is complete libertarian small “L” Libertine that’s on the far right.

And then you start moving left to get into the conservatives, and then you keep moving a lot further left. You ended up in the Democrats and then further left from them you have the communist and further left from them you have the Nazis, right? All different forms of socialism. On the left. So left is socialism, right is freedom is kind of how you boil it down. That’s the way it works in the United States. 

In Europe, it is a different scale. In Europe. The scale is entirely socialist. The assumption has in Europe has gotten to the point where everyone wants to be socialist. It’s just what kind of socialist. So on the right hand side of the European political scale, you have the national socialists, IE, the Nazis.

So the national socialists are on the right side of the scale. And on the left side of the European political scale, you have the communists, which are the international socialists. And then in the middle, you have these socialists that are, you know, kind of pro their country , maybe a little bit more international.

So think of a communist as it’s my, my union brother, uh, in Minsk. And I am here in Detroit. That’s what a communist would be. It’s international. It’s kind of what the United Nations is doing. It’s an international socialist organization. And then you have over on the far right of the European scale these people who are Nazis, which is, I am in Detroit. I am a union member. I am making automobiles. And that’s all that matters, you know, forget about Minsk. You know, I don’t forget about it. Right. So that’s the big difference nationalist versus internationalist. 

Well, when we’re talking about Gab.com, which is one of these social media sites out there, there have been many people who are national socialists who have been prominent on gab.

Of course, the people that make the most noise, the people that are the least appealing, the people that are the most offensive are the squeaky wheel by definition. And they’re the ones who are going to be talking about right. So I think that’s a, that’s a good thing. And so a lot of these people migrated, these people on the socialist scales, the national socialists and the international socialists, both of whom want to control your life.

They started going over onto Gab and the. Only real free and open social network right now is something called Mastodon, M A S T O D O N. And it is based on originalist internet views of the internet. And I explained that last hour as well. I’m an internet originalist. I believe the internet should be open. It should be freedom to speak and speak our mind. And obviously there’s a line there and that is where it’s legal to speak our minds. Right. You can’t be, be plotting. Things are going to result in imminent death or destruction, et cetera. Um, But that’s where I sit. And I also think that anyone should be able to make anything and have it go on the internet for anyone to use and compete freely.

Well that complete freely is not a big part of the internet nowadays. Unfortunately. So with Mastodon, you can put your own server up and there is a map out there right now that’s showing this is unofficial, but showing about 2,500 mastodon servers that are out there. That’s pretty huge. That’s a very, very big deal.

And it is kind of a friendlier social network, but some people have moved there that have these extremist ideas like BLM and Antifa, uh, who are, you know, obviously facist organizations in both cases. In other words, national socialists. And Mastodon’s admins have been forced to deal with this problem, but the beauty of Mastodon.

Is it as completely decentralized kind of like the internet was designed going right back to what I was saying about being an internet originalist. You don’t want any single point of failure, so I’ll, I’ll let you know how it goes here. I’m going to put a Mastodon server up. And maybe we can try it. Maybe I’ll invite you guys to it once I kind of got at work and we can see how it does and how it all works, but you can find it out there right now.

There’s lots of apps that speak this protocol that is used by these Mastodon servers, which have apparently been also integrated into other websites and network, but it’s essentially a way to host a social media website. Users can post 500 character messages called “toots.” Uh, and you can repost or boost messages on your own timeline, follow, or privately message other users.

But instead of it being a single site run by a company it is software built on open source freely available and using this Activity Pub protocol. So we’ll see how this all goes. I will let you guys know. 

Consumer electronics show. I am just disappointed . It was canceled due to the lockdown.

And that means that we aren’t out in Vegas. And the beautiful thing about it was you could wander around the floors for days, seeing new gadgets, seeing new technology improvements, dramatically new ones. There’s so many things. And it’s just not happening this year. Now they have this virtual version that I signed up for, and I’ve got a lot of emails from people who are promoting the different products and, you know, the all well and good.

But when you get back down to it, um, It’s just not, it’s not the same. Right? How can you get excited? How can you have buzz? It just doesn’t make sense, but some of the things that people have pointed out, like CNET has a lot of coverage this year, they have been the official coverage platform for the consumer electronics show for quite a while. But it is not like it used to be because they got caught with some bribes and other things. 

So here’s a few things just for you to keep an eye out for remember oftentimes stuff shown at CES doesn’t show up for six months or a year, but foldable phones are one thing, but LG has shown off.

A rollable smartphone. Yeah, really the expecting to release it later on this year and you roll it up and you stick it  in your pocket. I’m looking at a picture right now of  a company called TCLs new phone. This is a Chinese company and it has a 6.7 inch phone that can expand into a 7.8 inch tablet.

And actually. Pretty big tablet looking at this picture here. They also have a 17 inch. That’s what I’m looking at. 17 inch printed, OLED scrolling display that can be unfurled and has a 100% color gamut. So I’m looking at this thing. It’s basically a rollout think of your blinds in your windows, where you pull it out.

That’s what it is. And it rolls out to a 17 inch wide screen. Absolutely amazing. Now we are giving some of our clients, um, we actually haven’t handed them out yet. This was an end of year gift and it took us until now to get it together. But these little devices that you can put your phone in, and it has an inductive charger, it creates ozone. And also has ultraviolet light. So in other words, it kills germs. 

There’s a company that introduced an ultraviolet light treatment system for your car to kill pathogens. This man, this frame TV from Samsung is amazing. This thing is only 25 millimeters thick, which is crazy. It’s the smallest ever. And 75 inches, seven, five inch display. Is that something or what? 

A bunch of a wireless phone chargers that came out. There is a kind of a neat little, um, Bluetooth shower speaker from AMP that is powered by the water that flows through it. Right? So it’s stealing some of the water energy. 

This Cold Snap you might’ve seen. They won an innovation award this year. It kind of was like a career machine you’d use for making coffee, but it makes single serve. Pod dispensed ice cream. It’s just amazing. 

An infinity table game. This kind of reminds me of Ms. Pac-Man and the table version that you can use for running games. 

Samsung has new robots for the home. They have three of them. They’ve got one that’s for helping to clean the house. One’s a personal assistant and also acts as a security camera. 

OWC I love these guys, Other World Computing. I’ve had them on the show a lot of times. They got a new charging port again, uh, it’s amazing what these guys were able to do, but there’s, there’s lots of cool stuff that’s coming out this year.

I think it’s going to be a bit of a slower year than usual for some of these innovations. But, I expect next year we’ll be back in full swing. 

Thanks for listening today. Make sure you are on my email list. I’ve been sending out trainings about what to do with VPNs, how to lock down your Windows computer, and much more.

And you only get that if you’re on my email list and I send out that email once a week, Craigeterson.com. And you’ll find my podcast there. The articles I talk about my appearances on radio ,TV, everything. CraigPeterson.com and have a great week.

More stories and tech updates at:


Don’t miss an episode from Craig. Subscribe and give us a rating:


Follow me on Twitter for the latest in tech at:


For questions, call or text:


Listen to this episode