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How do you even prepare for something like that... Do we need to assign identifying keywords to each other when we leave home so we know we are really ourselves? Like a vocal pgp?

I told my wife that if I ever mention <redacted> while on a phone call, she should know that I am in trouble an unable to speak freely.

Sound like we'll all need more things like this eventually :(

It would make sense to have another word that indicates it is genuinely you and you are genuinely speaking freely.

If that's the default situation (a likely scenario for most people), you'd need something other than a single code word.

In practice, most people can conduct a reasonable verification through a series of challenge/response interactions based on shared knowledge, should they need to do so. Mentioning something done, said, or shared in private recently would suffice in many instances.

For more robust tradecraft, should you need it, a set of one-time codes (passwords or passphrases) might substitute.

When the former head of InterPol was arrested in China, he managed to alert his wife through the use of a duress signal, an image of a knife:


Not subtle, but effective.


In the film Capricorn One (1978), one of the astronauts alerted his wife by referring to a holiday they'd recently taken together, by mis-stating the destination as Disneyland, rather than Hollywood -- the land of make believe -- as it had actually been, which led to the revealing of the hoax mission.

That would solve the problem of having to find a word that you would never normally use but could slip in to a sentence normally.

If you can speak freely you don't need an extra codeword to explain that you are using the codeword in it's real meaning. Unless maybe you suspect that somebody is listening to you and might learn your codeword from that.

The codeword is to make it clear your words should be taken 100% seriously without considering the risk you are being coerced / spoofed with AI. If I agree on a word in advance with someone that no one could possibly guess and insert into an attempt to coerce / spoof my voice, then if there is truly an emergency in which I need this person to wire money to a random account, they will actually do it because they will know my request is genuine.

If I'm being coerced, I could have a codeword to indicate that. If I'm being spoofed with AI, I'm not in control of "my" words, so I can't. I need instead to prove when I'm not being spoofed with AI. That's the purpose of this second codeword.

I invented two code phrases for pretty much exactly the same reason, but in case I ever met myself from the future.

While it's a great idea, how do you test this? Is it worth the time?

All my loved ones are on my iCloud so I would just ping their phone/watch while confirming location and asking the assailant to let you hear the phone ping on the line.

Find My Friend is so unreliable for me it is nearly worthless. Apple isn’t really delivering what I need.

Really? How so? I use it probably almost daily and haven’t had an issue, at least I don’t think I have!

I've seen it fail to update the location pretty often.

how do you pronounce the < > symbols? i mean, 'redacted' is already a pretty strange thing to say by itself.

You just make static noises, like a radio signal being lost.

Also, you are lacking in the abstract thought department. Get that fixed, for your own benefit.

It's either a knowledge gap...or he is hopeless if he knew the symbol but didn't pick up on it. Nothing I know of can improve that.

I'd bet jiveturkey was joking.

They are pronounced "wakka" and "wakka" respectively.

less than redacted greater than, though it's clear he's keeping the real word a secret.

<...> is a common way of indicating a placeholder.

> How do you even prepare for something like that.

You don't because it statistically never happens. Just like you don't prepare for a plane crash or a lightning bolt striking you.

Yet, so many people have made plans for what they will do when they win the lottery.

I prepare for the astronomically improbable chance of a plane crash or lightning bolt striking me by having life insurance, so why such a reaction to someone asking this question?

Yes. My mom and I had phrases for duress. Since she has long since passed away, I can share ours. "I love you". Sad, right?

I'm broke so it makes things a lot easier.

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