To deal with more advanced convolutional detectors, consider wearing a hat or clothing with adversarial patches , simple patterns that can be printed onto stickers. These patches work by feeding the detector inputs that cause an overwhelming bias toward a particular class (eg. toaster), which drowns out the real signal (eg. human face). Even the first generation of adversarial patches are effective against most detectors deployed as of 2020.
 Brown et al. https://arxiv.org/abs/1712.09665
A fairly casual setup that looks pretty acceptable is to be riding/walking with a bike, helmet on, sunglasses on and a bandana covering the face (This is normal to stop bugs).
There are no methods that will remain bulletproof, for determined adversaries / state actors. Biometric gait analysis can potentially defeat facial camouflage, and the technology will continue to improve, especially as it becomes more widespread in non-surveillance applications, e.g. athletics and fitness
See discussion in other comments here
We're getting pretty close to that in some countries. Even in the USA where camera density isn't particularly high - there are so many cities where you cannot get around without using a car. After California eliminated the Steve Jobs license plate law, there's no place where using a car isn't fairly well tracked. With ALPR, Uber/Taxi records...I don't personally see how you can get around a city like Houston or Phoenix without either:
1) Being tracked from your house
2) Breaking the law (covering license plate, stealing car, etc)
Unless I've grossly overestimated the prevalence of ALPR's. I'm assuming there's quite a lot of undocumented ones.
I remember reading in 2016 that this system or another like it was being used in another US city. There don’t appear to be any rules around disclosure, and the costs will only decrease. It could be used in dozens or hundreds of cities already.
For a lot of people this wouldn't be super accurate since they will only see you to the front door but won't know what level you are on.
This is true for every countermeasure for every tech. Total covering of the face may be temporarily effective as well. Who knows, maybe it will become impossible to find a bike helmet that isn't connected to the internet with sensors inside it.
In the UK I recall at least one motorcyclist that has been tracked down after setting off cameras at silly speeds with a blocked license plate via helmet + bike + location.
It's probably more because in countries where people are used to having an exposed face they feel uncomfortable seeing someone fully covered at all times. Since humans recognize each other almost exclusively by face (you may rely on voice or even smell but not in a crowded space) and that's our most relatable feature, it's also the one that will make people feel a bit uneasy. Full face masks are usually associated with crime so it will take a while before people think "oh, they must be privacy conscious".
One major sticking point from law enforcement perspective (at least in countries that have some semblance of privacy) wasn't that the face is covered but rather that sometimes those wearing it for religious reasons refused to take it off when requested, like when being stopped for a traffic offense.
These issues only caused social unrest and that's something to avoid. In the meantime you can successfully fool pretty much all CV systems with a hat and glasses, and maybe add some carefully crafted patterns just to make sure. None of these are outlawed.
Enacting new laws and bans simply because some people "feel uncomfortable" is highly irresponsible.
In my country, there are AFAIK fewer than 500 people wearing burkas or niqabs, ie. face-covering veils commonly associated with Islam. For burkas alone, the number is estimated to be fewer than 50, in the entire country. Only a subset of those would refuse to remove their veils when asked by a police officer, especially if said police officer is female and some amount of privacy could be established.
Making sweeping legislation that affects the entire population, based on populist nationalist politicians drumming up xenophobia and fear of the Other, is profoundly unsound. Especially since people can (and have) already been fined for refusing to comply with orders given by the police.
The end result is that those women wearing veils under pressure from their husbands, will be forced to stay at home, by threat of fines.
> you can successfully fool pretty much all CV systems with a hat and glasses, and maybe add some carefully crafted patterns just to make sure. None of these are outlawed.
Big sunglasses cover your eyes, full-face masks (balaclavas) are worn in winter, people cover their faces with scarves when it's windy and cold/dusty.
The legislation in my country is written so any kind of face covering garment is illegal, if a police officer deems that it is being worn to conceal one's identity, and no other "allowable" circumstances exist. In effect, it gives the police free reign to enforce the law as they please, and where they please.
E: I don't disagree with your explanation for why it has been done, by populist right-wing politicians. My post does read a little confrontational, that wasn't really my intention, I realize we probably generally agree on this subject.
It's because burkhas are considered a repressive way of controlling women and making them submissive to, rather than equal to men.
In reality very few people ever consider this aspect of the clothing. The bans mostly prohibit covering the face and do nothing to remove the repressive aspect.
All most people see is a fully covered face and that makes them feel uneasy and make Islamophobic associations with religion or terrorism, as highlighted by most surveys . None of the surveys suggests an interest in the repressive aspect. In the same survey where over 80% of Germans wanted to have the burka banned, 25% "said the most pressing topic was domestic security and the fight against terrorism, just 12 percent view migrant integration as a priority".
People just want to see the face to feel lees uneasy, or simply to remove "foreign, invading" symbols. The laws were put in place to appease said social unrest and a good hint of that is that they are usually proposed and very strongly supported by populist and right-wing parties who surely only look after the well being of women.
The conviction you put in your statement is not supported by reality. And I'm not talking about official justification that has to look good in the media but the real situation on the ground.
There's no telling what type of data analysis might be possible in the future when applied to historical data.
Some people have very distinctive gaits. When I was married to a soldier, I could pick him out of a sea of men in identical uniforms from the back based on his gait.
Edit: Can people not downvote that comment? I'm pretty confident it wasn't intended to be fighty. It was just a faceblind person wanting to talk about a topic they know personally. Goodness.
I'm having a shit day. Blame Me instead.
self driving cars probably wouldn't try too hard to dodge a toaster.
Cars avoid obstacles. They don't need to identify individuals.
That defeatist attitude is what they want us to believe. Those doing the surveillance want to do it easily. If thinking that resistance is futile means you don't bother doing anything, then you are an easier item to monetize.
The reality is that we live in an age of amazing privacy tools. I can talk to someone on the other side of the planet totally anonymously. That wasn't possible until just over a decade ago (Tor). I can encrypt my data in a way that all the computers of the world working for billions of years could not decrypt (strong encryption). People used to put their lives on the line, risk being killed, to move such communications across boarders. And these tools are open source, under regular and public examination internationally. Adblockers and lower-level in-browser privacy tricks are also commonplace. So too companies dedicated to online privacy (VPN providers). They used to be illegal. Privacy-focused Linux distros abound. There might be more people looking at us, but this is a golden age for privacy if you care enough to actually try.
Those IR-emitting glasses really do work against 99% of cameras (the ones without mechanical irises). They are a powerful tool. What you will quickly learn is which places are really being watched, rather than simply recorded. You won't get 20 feet into a casino with them.
If you don't want to have to wear facepoint and glasses made of special materials, and clothes with specially designed patches, then write to your local politician to push for regulation of public surveillance.
The other privacy tools that you mention are all online. And, I argue, that's the only option now for anonymity.
I mean, how do you get around DNA testing?
"A recent article about a highly unconventional experiment involving a man who had received a bone marrow transplant has raised some questions for readers of The New York Times.
Four years after the lifesaving procedure, all the DNA in the patient’s semen had been replaced by that of his donor. This came as a surprise to forensic scientists at the Washoe County Sheriff’s Department in Reno, Nev., studying the case."
Not really arguing this is practical for anonymoisation - it's more an interesting fact.
Perhaps, but it can be easily lost by via technical means.
Anonymity in meatspace is arguably a dead issue.
Whenever I leave the house, I assume that I'm under surveillance. So I just act normal.
Edit: In particular, I play "harmless old man".
Cardinal Richelieu: "Ah. And so, how do you act when you're not being watched?" 
But anyway, the thing is that I do know that I'm under surveillance at least some of the time. So I might as well assume that it's all of the time. Because it's hard to know.
And sadly enough, I won't even speak freely with my wife, unless she's turned off her cellphone, or put it in the utility closet or bathroom, with the water running.
So let them. actually I am still hoping for the day at least the US puts me on a no entry list. I would see this as a badge of honor.
I wouldn't do that now.
That going through such steps migh assure some privacy?
Or that you'd take such measures as a matter of routine?
Or that you could do that without raising suspicions, or possibly being flagged / recorded in some manner despite (or on account of) the precautions?
Or ... ?
(Moral is not clear.)
So yes, I'm no longer comfortable assuming that such steps would guarantee any privacy. And yes, I'd also worry that at least parts of the process would be recorded. And the harder I tried to obfuscate, the more likely it'd raise suspicions.
I do worry about using a VPN. But that's not too uncommon where I live, so hopefully it's not a huge flag.
I neglected to say that I was doing that with the expectation of ~anonymity. Using those gift cards to lease VPN services and VPS. Mailing cash to people selling Liberty Reserve and Pecunix. And later, Bitcoin.
...until surveillance capitalism hurts democracy enough that people start rioting.
Absent opposition there's no particular pressure on it that would result in collapse. Sure, the inherent contradictions would lead to malaise, economic recession, and depression, but those are fairly normal parts of the political cycle that are easily spun and can always be blamed on a politically impotent minority or stock antagonist.
Eventually, the internal contradictions make it unsustainable. Before that point, resistance is essentially futile, and the regular dysfunction cycles can be swept under the rug, and resisters imprisoned or deleted.
At the point where it becomes unsustainable, resistance becomes successful.
Of course, resistance needs to be maintained through the futile years/decades/centuries, and at massive cost, so that it is there at the point when it is needed.
Once on the watch list, it is likely that any attempt to evade surveillance will be used to justify more invasive surveillance.
We need resistance to systems/services/initiatives that enable and encourage people to leak each other's data to third parties.
That, and the classic security/usability-tradeoff, render your implied suggestion somewhat obsolete, no? Sorry if I'm missing something.
Someone then argued "thats why I don't have smartphone", to which I responded that not having a smartphone doesn't affect the aforementioned conflict. So unless I'm missing something here, you just went entirely off topic.
Regardless: I'm european, so I'm somewhat confident that my ISP doesn't sell my data due to GDPR; Americas lack of consumer protection isn't really my business, nor should it be deemed 'the standard', as it isn't just that.
It was basically an emotional response to the idea.
I suppose that at least, not having a smartphone, I'm not sharing stuff about others. Except for the number, which is already ~widely known. But I wasn't thinking that when I wrote the comment.
But at least I'm not tracked so readily.
Also, I don't care so much about my meatspace name and email. There's absolutely nothing interesting about me in meatspace.
I'm not sure what I'd do if I actually needed a smartphone. Maybe I'd go with a PinePhone, with cellular and WiFi turned off, and external routers. Hopefully someone will come out with small routers.
But on the other hand, maybe that would attract too much attention. So perhaps a basic smartphone would be better.
After you subscribe, you probably get a page saying:
"Well, not this way."
Transparency and equal accssibility of data is likely the most viable and just path in the future given that it is between an arms race and outright impossible. It would leave everyone on equal footing essentially and minimize exploitability. It wouldn't be easy to adjust to, especially with embedddd societal hypocritical expectations. Japan for one has a perfect example in Sariaman culture that it is expected to head out and get smashed with coworkers after work but shameful to be identified while drunken. It would be healthier in the long run for society to learn to rid itself of cognitive dissonance one way or another. Laws would also need adjusted to keep up with actual need of enforcement so they don't depend upon selective enforcement - which is good practice period. Public drunkenness for instance is meant more for being a drunk disruptive ass than just cuffing anyone with a BAC above a threshod. Anyway all of that doesn't change the fact that said transition would be painful.
A quick search shows that you are talking about Brandon Mayfield. From what I can gather, there wasn't a collision in fingerprints, but a falty analysis (arches in opposite directions, etc) on the FBI's part.
I have argued this in the past, but one must consider that not everyone has the same leverage over that data. While it’s true that open-source can help here, there will always be a gap between personal and corporate data analysis capabilities. It’s not a certainty that those with increased resources now wouldn’t get a first-mover advantage on extracting value from this data, not that sufficient counterbalances would emerge.
Based on everything I read thus far, short of removing yourself from society, a true anonymity is not available to an average person. And that kinda defeats the point.
Maybe it would change if politicians' every move was crowd sourced.
We have plenty of recent examples here in Europe where people came from another continent, discarded their previous identity and got a new one based on their own claims about their age, name, origins, religion etc. ... Perhaps it's not available to the "average person", just to people from particular regions, but it's a proven, very effective way to obtain multiple/new identities.
All these suggestions only work when a lot of people apply them. Otherwise you end up just like with using privacy operating systems, like Qubes OS. Yeah, you will be safer, but everyone also immediately thinks that you have something to hide, which causes systems to double down on tracking you. You might even get some human "attention", if you actually have something to hide.
A couple of users using Tor, are not anonymous. A couple of people wearing IR glasses, are not anonymous. Millions of people using AdBlocker, that's already doing something. Think of masses.
If you try to be anonymous just by yourself, you are running into the trap of making your trails so uncommon, that people will still be able to track you. An example: Qubes OS causes so unique browser fingerprinting, that even under TOR, I will still be uniquely identified. That's why OS like Tails, spend so much effort avoiding different fingerprints for different users.
It’s the only thing I could find on the subject.
So Seattle Times doesn't want me to read this article unless I share my identity with them so they can sell it to others.
Some years ago, NY Times published a series about online tracking. And said series accurately reported tracking by NY Times.
Or for Wired, which apparently doesn't offer reader view, hitting escape as soon as content loads.
Stallman wgets websites and prints the text to read them, that's real privacy conscious.
* They are aware of those, and therefore may use other countermeasures.
* The masking still reduces the "surveilance surface".
Sharing military surveillance mitigation tricks is not unlike sharing 0-days against government systems, and can be seen as unethical and counterproductive: Military surveillance will try to improve their systems, and bad people will use it to avoid surveillance.
It is too simplistic to deem any and all surveillance as inherently bad and invasive. No country can ensure the safety of its tax payers if it cripples their counterintelligence, foreign intelligence, border security, counterterrorism.
People who deem national security as more important than individual security, or the security of anti-nation dissidents, or people living outside the legally approved modes, should be applauded. It is not very nice to decrease the security of me and my family to obtain an ideological goal.
If you're going to make a ridiculously overbroad statement like "surveillance increases security" then I hope you have some very strong evidence or else be ready for people like me to point out that not really true across the board at all.
Do you have any evidence that surveillance of citizens increases national security? Even we you did, it's not clear that it's worth the trade-off in freedom. And even then, that is irrelevant for what we're talking about, which is whether a given individual would benefit from submitting to the surveillance state (99% won't).
Also, the West has a storied history of abusing it's surveillance powers. Are we just handwaving this away or what?
Who said anything about military surveillance? Why on earth would you jump to the conclusion that military surveillance is what we are discussion? Most government-run domestic surveillance likely comes from law enforcement and agencies with a domestic purview like Homeland Security. The NSA is the exception, of course.
I would expect that even most privacy advocates wouldn't have a problem with surveillance that is a part of actual military operations.
> It is not very nice to decrease the security of me and my family to obtain an ideological goal.
That's your opinion. Ben Franklin and many others would disagree, and we have a Bill of Rights in place specifically to disallow this kind of tradeoff.
If you want absolute security at any cost, Singapore is always an option.
Here are a few for you to consider:
Post 9/11: the tracking of muslim american communities and all that came from Snowden's disclosures
Interment of Japanese Americans: identify, tracked and literally interned during WWII
WWII Axis decisions: the tracking, internment, and death of Jews, Slavs, gypsies and others
WWI: The Wilson administration banned radical and Socialist journals from the mail system, jailed the leader of the Socialist party even though ~1% of the US population voted for the guy
McCarthyism which was shown to be used against political rivals as much as it was against socialists
The list honestly goes on and on. A government cannot be trusted with expanded surveillance tools and there just needs to be oversight. Its not to say it shouldnt exist, its to say it should always be viewed with a critical gaze.
As far as the ideological goal sitting above your security, its important to remember that your ideological goal may be at odds. Democracy was at odds. Socialism is at odds. Freedom of religion in communist china and russia was at odds with the existing govt. Its easy to say these things when we feel like we're on the 'right' side and things will never change.
Crime is, by definition, illegal.
How on earth a country turns into an genocide state by simply implementing a surveillance? Why doesn’t South Korea oppress/kill anyone, having surveillance virtually everywhere except toilets? (Yes, there is an organization that prevents this.)
Mass surveillance is often used in ways that don't promote general welfare.