A Pocket Guide to Computer Security

The one step method is to never turn on your computer. Use it only as a household decoration. If you’re unwilling to be that thorough, here’s the alternative, based on the revelations of the last year.

IF you:

  • Build your device from parts obtained from various sources
  • Order said parts right before the shipping cutoff and use next day a.m. delivery for all purchases, tracking each step of the delivery
  • Accept delivery, build and use the device only in a secure site, protected by several levels of security, with the details known only to you
  • Use an open source OS, carefully verifying it’s a legitimate copy
  • Never use the internet
  • Physically remove the camera, sound card, mic/speakers, bluetooth, and networking card from the device
  • Use the device only in a windowless, EM/RF shielded, soundproofed room
  • Put RF filters on the AC power source and use the device only on battery
  • Never allow cell phones or any other communication device in the room
  • Never allow any other computing device in the room
  • Use open source full drive encryption
  • Never install any proprietary software
  • Secure erase all deleted files, system logs and other records
  • Never take the device from the room, and absolutely never cross an international border with it
  • Avoid making yourself a target, with “target” defined extremely broadly

THEN you MAY be secure. Otherwise…well, it’s probably better if you let the government handle security for you. They already offer a wonderful free backup service.


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