Twitter is essentially a public soapbox, but people might not always realise just how public it actually is. Analysis of a user’s activity can find out where they are in the world, when they sleep, work, when they’re most likely out of the house or on the move, native languages, technology the user carries with them and so on, through Twitter’s own API which makes this data easily public.
To mess around with this, I tried out tweets_analyzer, which is a Twitter stalking program written in Python by security researcher x0rz, who also has an amazing blog post which explains why it’s more difficult to stay anonymous (or just keep some revealing information private) on Twitter than you might think. Here’s what tweets_analyser had to say about U.S. President Trump…
Above, the program is pulling down the data: just the last 1,000 out of 34,469 of them. Within that initial account check of @realDonaldTrump, we can see our user has set his account to the Eastern Standard timezone, prefers the Twitter UX in English and has geo-location activated for his tweets. But what’s he do, on average, on a daily basis?
Our user averages just around 8 unique tweets per day, which doesn’t really seem to match his reputation. We can see his overall Twitter activity picks up at around 7 a.m. and doesn’t let up until around 10 p.m., on average, and it looks like he’s not getting much sleep. We’re only seeing nothing happen from 1-4 a.m. Power user sleeps about four hours.
You can catch this guy on Twitter most days, but he peaks on Wednesday and spends quite a bit of The Day of Rest on there as well. Saturday looks slightly relaxed.
[+] Detected languages (top 5)
- en 983 (98%)
- und 15 (1%)
- pt 1 (0%)
- pl 1 (0%)
Our user is almost surely mono-lingual.
[+] Detected sources (top 10)
- Twitter for iPhone 481 (48%)
- Twitter for Android 429 (42%)
- Twitter Web Client 85 (8%)
- Twitter for iPad 3 (0%)
- Twitter Ads 1 (0%)
- Periscope 1 (0%)
There’s been a lot in the press about our user’s crappy Android mobile, but we can see here that he’s not just on one device. In fact, there’s an iPhone that gets much more use. Text analysis of his tweets suggests he’s not the only user on this account.
Every non-hyperbolic tweet is from iPhone (his staff).
Our user doesn’t retweet that much, and he seems to reference himself more than anyone else. Interesting who he tweeted at the most after his own team. Bit.ly throws things off a bit, but we can see he’s big on Facebook. Fox News doesn’t make it in the top 5 sources, so they must be bummed out.
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DATE: Friday, 20th of January 2017
I'll keep this short. Today sees the inauguration of president pussy grabber. I’ve been critical of White House administrations from both parties and candidates from just about every party. Here we have a different creature. He is an outwardly xenophobic, hate-baiting carpet bagger. He is a robber baron with no work experience that doesn’t include dodging taxes, filing for bankruptcy, swindling people and shouting random obscenities at his critics. America now owes the world new apologies on top of those still outstanding. There will be more to list in the coming days. There’s plenty of blame to go around, but chiefly responsible are those currently cheering President No. 45's installation into the White House. These are the ones to be wary of. Watch out. Collaborate. Stay safe. Find your own way to be dangerous to this machine.
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Comment: GPGTools - https://gpgtools.org
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…(I)n both the Ohio and Nebraska primaries, back to back, McGovern was confronted for the first time with the politics of the rabbit-punch and the groin shot, and in both states he found himself dangerously vulnerable to this kind of thing. Dirty politics confused him. He was not ready for it….
This is one of the oldest and most effective tricks in politics. Every hack in the business has used it in times of trouble, and it has even been elevated to the level of political mythology in a story about one of Lyndon Johnson’s early campaigns in Texas. The race was close and Johnson was getting worried. Finally he told his campaign manager to start a massive rumor campaign about his opponent’s life-long habit of enjoying carnal knowledge of his own barnyard sows.
“Christ, we can’t get a way calling him a pig-fucker,’ the campaign manager protested. “Nobody’s going to believe a thing like that.”
“I know,” Johnson replied. “But let’s make the sonofabitch deny it.”
I like this one because it reminds me of the scene in War Games where both military guys have to turn their keys simultaneously to get the launch codes. Below is the method for sharing information with two or more people, but they won’t be able to access it unless all of them agree to use their keys. Below, you’ll see this is a kind of strategy that could be used by corporates, governments and service providers, so they can agree to, for example, break into your device. I want to create an App that does this for individuals, since it’s quite a good proof of concept and would have some interesting application in the wild. Who’s with me?
Even if you were using mobile or browser settings to block tracking, it wouldn’t matter. Not only is this aimed at building up an extensive profile to target market users, it creates an impressive profile for any government agencies with access to the provider’s database. AccessNow.Org set up a site you can visit with your mobile to see if this is effecting you at AmIBeingTracked.Com.
Superfish is a bit of adware that was surreptitiously installed on Lenovo machines running Windows, for the purpose of injecting ads into your browser. The little program acts like a man-in-the-middle attack, only without a man, and diverts your supposedly secure https connections so it can target you with the exact right wording to buy viagra or go on a holiday somewhere.
Meanwhile, Lenovo has announced it’s removing it from new machines, offering patches for existing machines, doesn’t understand why people didn’t like it and doesn’t regret doing it. Thinkpads deserved better.