Mike the Mick

The Author

I can read, write, and do sums in my head.

I’ve read many books, thought many thoughts, and written many lines of prose.  I’m not sure that any of these activities has been of value.  But, I’m almost to the end of the road, and not worrying about it too much.  Here I am, in my thinking cap.


I am a web analytics consultant, currently (2015) employed by a large international consultancy. I help clients observe and understand the activities of visitors to their web sites and their web-based applications. Much of my work relates to the technical side of collecting data, normalizing it, and creating reports from it.


The Idea

The name and the tag line for this blog come from this book.

Diffie, Whitfield, and Susan Eva. Landau. Privacy on the Line: The Politics of Wiretapping and Encryption. Cambridge, MA: MIT, 1998. Print.

It’s worth the reading, if you want to know how we arrived at our current impasses vis a vis privacy.

The citizen has within reach simple, and effective measures to protect online activities from snoops, governmental and otherwise. It’s fine and proper to hammer the government and its agents, to drive them back from the keyhole.  But, it’s foolish to abandon our own efforts.

  • Use A VPN

  • Use a password manager

  • Use an encrypted email service, such as Hushmail

  • Encrypt your online documents with a 3rd party tool, such as Boxcryptor

You can protect yourself, and incidentally piss off anyone who might be trying to hack into your information.

The Politics

You can’t have security and privacy unless you’re willing to undertake on your own to protect them.  That undertaking does not involve guns, or secret hideouts, or chain link fences topped with electrified barbed wire.  You must extend to others the same privacy rights that you extend to yourself.  You must be willing to stand up for security, period, and without making excuses when someone you don’t like has their security and privacy violated.

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