Countermeasures against cell phone lurking and harassment

I’ve been promising a column on IMSI catchers and other hacks and devices that real estate mobbers use to eavesdrop on their victims and get information they can use to blackmail them, to continuously stalk and monitor victims until they give up their tenancies, and to harass victims using the speakers of their own phones. This column is not it.

That said, I wanted to note something new I tried today on my smart phone. On the theory that some of the harassment that comes over my own smart phone speaker when the wireless is off is enabled by silent calls to the device, I found the privacy setting that rejects all calls on my iPhone. While it’s the kind of configuration that will likely cause me problems if I get calls and forget that I’ve changed my privacy setting in this manner, it’s worth a try to see if some of the harassment that comes onto my speaker might be enabled by calls to the device that are not signaled by ringer or alert but enable a stalker to access an active speaker.

Other things I’ve tried increasingly on the cell phone are keeping wireless off, closing applications, muting the sound on music players, and setting the ringer on the left side of the iPhone to silence. I have noticed the greatest changes, with the harassment being muted at least temporarily, by lowering the volume using the slider in music player applications and by switching off the phone ringer.

While I do know that IMSI catchers can be used for a “man-in-the-middle” attack on a cell phone that allows calls to be overheard, I do not know if an IMSI catcher alone gives a means to a harasser to speak on someone else’s call or allows for a “party line” to be created that would. I note that before I had a cell phone, I had  POTS (Plain Old Telephone Service) with a cordless phone and when the mobbing started voices that have harassed me now for almost two years, voices that sound like my neighbors, began babbling with every call, pretending surprise at the “party line.” Nearly two years later and on an iPhone built on wholly different technologies and protocols, the mobbers make no pretense about it being a party line. This is straight-up harassment.

If you know how cell phone lurking and speaker harassment are enabled, particularly on an iPhone, please comment and I’ll allow it to appear on this page. The information you provide could help others who are being harassed by cell phone, even if they aren’t being real estate mobbed. ▪

 

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