Tech trends Big Brother must love
Tech trends Big Brother must love
4:44

Tech trends Big Brother must love

Culture
It?s kinda freaky to think about how the technology we use every day can be turned around to spy on us. Your cell phone calls, text messages, email, online habits -- if you?ve got something to hide, you picked the wrong time to be alive. And the really bad news -- it?s only going to get worse. I?m Donald Bell, and in this Top 5 I?m counting down the five trends in consumer technology that are like catnip for intelligence agencies. Starting off at #5: the Cloud. Google, Microsoft, Apple, Amazon, and even relatively small guys like Dropbox, are all tripping over themselves to offer us free online backup of all of our documents, emails, photos, videos -- anything you would traditionally store on a hard drive. On top of that, the physical storage on today?s devices is getting smaller. We used to be up in arms about having to fit our music collection on an 80Gb iPod, but now we?re suddenly fine with a 16GB iPad, or a Macbook Air laptop with 128Gb of storage. Point is, putting your digital life in the cloud is no longer optional - - it?s the default. Now instead of the government keeping a file on you, they can just wait for you to upload the file yourself. If you?re not paranoid yet, how about #4? The connected car. One of the biggest trends in car tech is the idea of having a cellular data connection baked right into your car. GPS Navigation, Pandora Radio, roadside assistance, all available to you right off the lot, whether you have a smartphone or not. But who has access to that data? And how long before that information is used against you in traffic court? In theory, they?ll know exactly how fast you were going, at the precise time, and exactly how loudly you were listening to Justin Bieber radio. Pretty soon, all the drama of a high speed chase will be eliminated by the flick of a remote engine kill switch. Kinda takes the fun out of it. I mean, attempted bank robbery by foot just sounds exhausting. Ok, the #3 tech trend that Big Brother is all about: Cameras on your TV. Whether it?s a Smart TV with a ?Skype? camera or an Xbox with Kinect, we?ve now entered the era where our TVs are watching us. And turning the lights off won?t save you -- the Kinect can map out your living room in infrared. Ewww. Hidden inside the Trojan horse of Dance Central and potential Skype conversations with relatives you really don?t want to see on a 55-inch screen, we?re outfitting our living rooms with internet connected, ever-present video cameras, and we don?t really know who?s on the other side of them. I mean, if the government required a camera in your living room, we?d riot. But if Microsoft says you get to hold an imaginary light saber, you?ll go out and buy the camera yourself. Way to go, America! If you?re not scared yet, how about #2? The always-on smartphone microphone. In an effort to make interactive virtual assistants like Google Now and Siri more seamless, the next evolution of this technology will have them listening constantly for your commands. And you won?t have to wait long -- the upcoming Motorola X smartphone is rumored to be the first with an always-listening mode. Now, in theory, these phones are tuning out everything you say that?s not a command. But how the hell is the NSA going to keep their hands off this? I mean, a constantly activated microphone that you keep in your pocket all day. Did The Dark Knight teach us nothing? You think Morgan Freeman is going to stand by and let this happen? I don?t think so. But you know what Big Brother would love even more than a microphone in your pocket? How about a camera on your face? Our #1 tech trend that the NSA must be salivating over: wearable tech. We?re talking smart watches, Google Glass, even things like the Nike Fuelband or Fitbit. As we augment our bodies with gadgets that collect data about us and the world all around us, we?re basically doing espionage on ourselves. It?s cute now, but when you get fired from your job because Google autotagged you in some unsavory Google Glass photo, or maybe you get brought in for questioning because the GPS in your smartwatch places you at the scene of a crime, the novelty of this stuff wears pretty thin. So there you have it, five reasons to put foil up in your windows, strip down naked, delete your Facebook profile, flush your phone, and start planning your new life as an Australian emu rancher. But if that?s not enough to have you renounce technology, you can see more from me over at Top5.CNET.com. I?m Donald Bell, thanks for watching.

Up Next

iPhone 14 is Missing These 5 Features
top5iphone14missing-00-00-00-00-still001

Up Next

iPhone 14 is Missing These 5 Features

Top 5 new Samsung Galaxy S22 rumors
latest-s22-rumor-roundup-video-1

Top 5 new Samsung Galaxy S22 rumors

Top 5 iPhone 14 Rumors
iphone14-rumors2021-200000

Top 5 iPhone 14 Rumors

Top 5 most exciting Galaxy S22 Ultra rumors
galaxy-s22-rumor-roundup-2

Top 5 most exciting Galaxy S22 Ultra rumors

Windows 11: Will Microsoft learn from past mistakes?
windowslaunchfails-00-00-21-04-still002

Windows 11: Will Microsoft learn from past mistakes?

Top 5 most exciting iPhone 13 rumors
iphone13-rumorsaug2021-00000

Top 5 most exciting iPhone 13 rumors

5 cheaper alternatives to the AirPods Pro
yt-top5-cheap-alternatives-for-airpods-pro-1

5 cheaper alternatives to the AirPods Pro

2021 iPad Pro: The best new features
yt-ipad-pro-features-top5-2

2021 iPad Pro: The best new features

5 ways to get more out of Netflix
top5-netflixtips-00-00-06-16-still004

5 ways to get more out of Netflix

2021 MacBook Pro: What to expect
yt-apple-rumors-2

2021 MacBook Pro: What to expect

Tech Shows

The Apple Core
apple-core.png

The Apple Core

Alphabet City
alphabet-city.png

Alphabet City

CNET Top 5
top-5.png

CNET Top 5

The Daily Charge
the-daily-charge.png

The Daily Charge

What the Future
what-the-future.png

What the Future

Tech Today
tech-today.png

Tech Today

Cooley On Cars
on-cars.png

Cooley On Cars

Carfection
carfection.png

Carfection

Latest News

Finding the Best Budget Smartwatch Under $100
240517-site-smartwatches-under-100

Finding the Best Budget Smartwatch Under $100

Klipsch Flexus Soundbars: Which One is Right for You?
Klipsch Flexus Range

Klipsch Flexus Soundbars: Which One is Right for You?

Unitree G1 vs. Boston Dynamics Atlas: Hypermobility in Humanoid Robots
240523-site-unitree-robotics-thumbnail-2

Unitree G1 vs. Boston Dynamics Atlas: Hypermobility in Humanoid Robots

Apple TV Just Leveled Up with the RetroArch App
240523-site-i-turned-my-apple-tv-into-a-sega-genesis

Apple TV Just Leveled Up with the RetroArch App

Everything Announced at Microsoft Build 2024
240521-site-microsoft-build-supercut-thumbnail

Everything Announced at Microsoft Build 2024

Sonos Ace Headphones Get Set to Take on the AirPods Max (First Look)
240520-site-sonos-headphones-4

Sonos Ace Headphones Get Set to Take on the AirPods Max (First Look)

Microsoft Announces First Surface Copilot Plus PCs Powered by Qualcomm
240520-site-microsoft-reax-2

Microsoft Announces First Surface Copilot Plus PCs Powered by Qualcomm

Everything Announced at Microsoft's Surface Copilot Plus PC Event
microsoft-event-5-20-24-20-may-2024-02-00-39-pm-00-08-21-09-still001

Everything Announced at Microsoft's Surface Copilot Plus PC Event

Android 15: See New Features in Action
yt-android-15-clean-1

Android 15: See New Features in Action

If Apple Makes Siri Like ChatGPT or Gemini, I'm Done
240516-site-hey-siri-lets-talk

If Apple Makes Siri Like ChatGPT or Gemini, I'm Done