Countermeasures: Proactive Self Defense Against Ubiquitous Surveillance

Presented at HOPE Number Nine (2012), July 15, 2012, 10 a.m. (60 minutes)

From governments fighting terrorists to companies hawking products to free online services where you are the product, it seems that everyone wants a piece of you and your personal information. This talk begins with the current state of our surveillance society and delves deeply into countermeasures you and society at large can employ to maintain and protect your right to privacy. Lisa and Greg will deconstruct a surveillance system and examine techniques for defeating or degrading each component. They’ll cover technical countermeasures, but also present techniques for influencing policy, law, and the incentives underpinning surveillance activities. Left unconstrained, the problems of the emerging surveillance society will only get worse as more and more sensors and tracking applications invade the physical and digital worlds. You’ll leave this talk with a clear understanding of how to protect yourself and with strategies to deflect the trajectory of our surveilled future.


  • Lisa Shay
    Lisa Shay is an assistant professor in West Point’s department of electrical engineering and computer science. She is an electrical engineer and her research interests include sensor networks, privacy, automated law enforcement, robotics, and surveillance countermeasures.
  • Greg Conti
    Greg Conti is director of West Point’s Cyber Security Research Center. He is the author of Security Data Visualization (No Starch Press) and Googling Security (Addison-Wesley), an EFF Favorite Book, as well as over 40 articles and papers covering online privacy, usable security, cyber warfare, and security data visualization.