It's hard to say how private investigators would react to books like J. J. Luna's How to Be Invisible--while it makes their jobs a lot harder, most of them are paid by the hour. If you want to withdraw from the snooping eyes of the government, corporations, stalking ex-boyfriends, or practically anyone else, this practical, down-to-earth guide will help you and your family vanish. It's not a glamorous James Bond life Mr. Luna is inviting you to take part in; it's probably much like the life you're living right now. Spending much of the early part of the book frightening the reader with tales of stalkers and mistaken identities, the author successfully makes his case that a few adjustments to an individual's personal information flow can make a life-or-death difference. While getting his plan off the ground will take a bit of planning and effort (you have to move at least once to clear your trail), it is sustainable and worthwhile even for those who think they have nothing to hide. Learn about anonymous travel and purchase, using trusts and corporations to keep your assets private, and how recent laws (the book's date of publication is 2000) significantly affect older methods of guaranteeing privacy. Luna makes no claim to know the law where you live and suggests that you consult a trusted local attorney before implementing most of his advice. Just knowing how easily a criminal can learn about and exploit your personal information will make you want to do just that. --Rob Lightner
From Kirkus Reviews
A subversive, disturbing, and altogether remarkable exposure of our frightening transparency to government agencies, investigators, the media, and more malign forces.Luna, a security consultant who spent 11 years running a secret operation in Franco's Spain (presumably outwitting the state police), begins by presenting formidable evidence of the demolition of personal privacy in the information age, as well as a chilling hypothetical selection of ways in which this state of affairs can ruin the existence of Joe & Jane Citizen (from false criminal accusations to stalking to lawsuits). His wryly presented conclusion--that advanced privacy measures are flood insurance--are borne out through the clear-headed instructional chapters that follow. First he shows how to protect one's physical space: how to construct an alternative mail-drop and ghost address, how to keep your real domicile unknown, and how to avoid using one's social-security number and birthdate for identification purposes. Although his suggestions seem surprisingly simple, he offers stern disclaimers to consult legal professionals. Further chapters delve deeply into the complicated netherworld of trusts, limited-liability companies, personal nominees, secret home businesses, anonymous travel, hidden ownership of vehicles and real estate, and so forth. One cannot but note that such information, although certainly invaluable to people in particular demographics (such as undercover cops or abused women, who might well need to disappear), is most often utilized by a new breed of transnational organized crime (with examples evident from Nick Leeson to the Russian Mafia). Yet Luna--whose slightly ornate prose suggests Nero Wolfe after several Belgian ales--makes a bracing, serious argument for the aggressive defense of one's informational and asset privacy, acidly noting throughout how governmental entities constantly attempt to seal the doors of invisibility, as in their harrassment of mail-receiving services.This is a memorable work which should be considered by many and undoubtedly will be acted upon by some. -- Copyright © 2000 Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.
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