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No Place to Hide Paperback – January 17, 2006
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Perhaps you have never heard of Acxiom, Seisint, ChoicePoint, HNC Software, TransCore, Searchspace, and Verint? Well, that's just the way those companies want it. And they are just some of the companies who know all about you - your name, address, and social security number, every place you've ever lived, your credit histories, who your friends are, what you say and do on the Internet, where you travel, even your faces, fingerprints, and DNA. In the interest of catching terrorists and preventing terrorism, federal and local law enforcement agencies have increasingly turned to these companies for help - all conveniently situated outside the privacy laws and Patriot Act restrictions and free to collect virtually any information they can lay their hands on. The result is a boom in the "total information awareness" business that is creating a world of commercial "big brothers." It is a world about which most Americans are blissfully, and foolishly, unaware.
Faster machines, bigger databases, more networking, and microminiaturization to the level of flea-sized RFID chips and "smart dust" will only make these systems more and more pervasive.Read more ›
O'Harrow exposes the serious issue of private data technology companies and their marriage to government agencies, a marriage that is thriving while unchecked and ungoverned by guidelines or laws to protect every American's basic right to Privacy.
This book leads one to formulate the question "Is giving up my basic rights to privacy and living in a unrestricted, constantly growing complex of surveillance, data collection and selling of that data to any government agency going to make my life a more secure and safe one?
No Place To Hide is a concise and frighteningly revealing book that all Americans should read. O'Harrow arms us with an inside look at a growing partnership between private industry and government that needs to be controlled. A book that should remind all American's that we do have a voice in our Government and that we have serious Privacy and Civil Liberty issues at hand that we need to address as a nation.
It's a kind of science fiction nightmare where J. Edgar Hoover and Joseph McCarthy have been reincarnated into big business seeking to profit off the fears of the post 9/11 world - only it's real, it's revolting and the politicians and bureaucrats are often complicit. If the techno-patriots are going to save us from the next Mohamed Atta, who's going to save us from them? Can they really do it, or is it all smoke and mirrors in the name of profiteering? Are there alternatives that are better, faster, more cost effective, reliable and less intrusive? Sadly, these questions are the cliff hangers that go unanswered in O'Harrow's thought provoking book. There is no protagonist - only a bunch of characters - often seedy - who are out to convince America that you'll be safer if government can peek at your knickers on demand.
In a year where the U.S. will begin to implement Intelligence Reform legislation, the Patriot Act is up for review, and deficits are at all time highs to fight the war on terror, No Place to Hide is particularly timely. O'Harrow sets the table beautifully - it's up to every reader to decide whether America can stomach the meal being served. This is a mandatory read for policymakers and anyone who cares about what it means to live in America.
As for government spying. We know now that the government is surveying us in much greater and more Orwellian ways than we would have thought possible. Unfortunately, this is what I wanted to learn more about and is pretty much missing from the book. Also, there is no "solution" provided. How can we protect ourselves?
Mainly, I was disapointed be because every person mentioned in the book has a drawn out biography provided about them. I really didn't care how the CEO of a data mining company grew up. I wanted to learn about the subject of the book, not history of indivuals.
Its not a bad book, but I grew tired of the biographies and the content didn't surprise me or frighten me enough to be real impressed.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This book contains material that is important for all Americans to understand, but it is proving difficult to read. It's not holding my interest like I thought it would.Published on August 3, 2013 by Lloyd
Having been attached to NSA while in the military I can say I really enjoyed the book...but no real suprises, just further confirmation of where things are going and how fast.Published on July 10, 2013 by Albert McCarthy
This is a good read. Everyone should get this info.
You will learn a lot and then realize what you DON'T know.
Difficult to read if you aren't up on technology but very informative. It would be helpful if there was more information about personal security.Published on December 28, 2012 by Red Hat Daughter
A real eye opener. I now assume I am always being "observed","measured" or just plain old watched. Now I leave little messages for them. In your face creeps... Read morePublished on July 17, 2011 by EASY TRAVELER
WHen this book came out, in 2005, it was an expose on the databases and incredible amounts of information available on each of us. Read morePublished on February 10, 2010 by Yoda
This book is the result of a very thorough and detailed investigation. Some of the chapters are more exciting than you'd expect from a book like this. Read morePublished on May 10, 2007 by Patrick Thibaut
Robert O'Harrow writes about what data can be collected on individuals, who collects it and who uses it. Read morePublished on March 26, 2007 by Secrets & Lies
This is a must read for anyone with any concern for personal privacyPublished on January 6, 2007 by J. Magner