(Minghui.org) While our cell phones have become seemingly indispensable tools for communication, business, and information, they also present security vulnerabilities whereby others can listen to our conversations, track our movements, and gather sensitive personal information. Repressive regimes like the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) are known to monitor private citizens through their cell phones. Despite knowing the importance of cell phone security, some Falun Dafa practitioners have still failed to pay enough attention to the issue. I listed some examples of cell phones being monitored by the communist regime in the article Paying Attention to Cell Phone Security. Here are some additional cases. 

1. Placing Cell Phone Nearby When Reading Books or Doing Exercises

A female practitioner always placed her cell phone with her when she was making informational materials or reading Falun Dafa books with other practitioners. Her family reminded her several times but she didn't listen. 

She said, “Even if the phone is tapped, I hope those who are listening would learn the facts of Falun Dafa.” She didn't follow the single line communication between practitioners either. Later, she was arrested and six material-production sites were destroyed. It seems she has been monitored for a long time. She was sentenced to seven years in prison.

Eighteen years ago, the only major material production site was destroyed because the cell phone of the practitioner in charge of the site had been monitored and located. One day before the incident, the practitioner saw a monitoring vehicle cruising the street but he didn't pay attention at that time. 

Later the cell phone rang. When the practitioner picked it up, the other party kept silent. And again the practitioner didn't sense anything wrong. Soon the material site was raided and several practitioners were arrested. The economic and human losses were huge. One practitioner was persecuted to death, one became disabled and several other practitioners were sentenced to between three and twelve years in prison.

2. Feature Phones Also Facilitate Persecution

Feature phones are simple phones with few functionalities beyond calling or texting, also known as “dumb phones” for seniors. Some practitioners thought feature phones were more secure. However, it is not true.

A female coordinator together with several practitioners went to the countryside to distribute Falun Dafa materials at night. Her senior-friendly phone rang halfway. She answered the phone, but the other party didn't speak. She hung up and didn't think much about it.

Right after they arrived at the destination, police officers came and arrested them all except the non-practitioner driver. They later learned that her phone had been monitored for more than a year. She was given a heavy sentence.

3. Bringing Phones to a Practitioner's Home That Lead to Arrest

It was one day two years ago. I went to a fellow practitioner's house and happened to see a young couple installing an NTD satellite dish for her. Somehow they couldn't tune out the signal, thus the husband called another practitioner for help. When I saw him using his cell phone, I asked, “Why do you bring your cell phone with you?” He said that he had no choice because it was a remote countryside.

A few months later, an elderly practitioner invited the husband to the countryside to install an NTD satellite dish. They were all arrested right after he arrived. The police officers were waiting for them. Later the police officers arrested the wife at home. They also tracked another practitioner who had a satellite dish installed by the husband, and forced the practitioner to sign a statement renouncing Dafa.

Furthermore, a few practitioners who often went to the couple's home were also arrested.

Later we found out the husband’s cell phone was under tight monitoring. Whenever he drove his car, the national security officers followed. They also installed a camera in the elevator of his apartment building and the camera was connected to the cell phone of the police, and they saw everyone who visited this couple.

4. Husband and Wife Talk About Everything on the Phone

Five or six years ago, I met another male practitioner. While we were chatting, his phone rang, it was his wife. The wife told him, “XX wants to install a 'big pot' (satellite dish), when will you come back?”

I asked, “You two are talking about everything on the phone?” 

I think even a husband and wife should be careful not to say any sensitive thing on the phone and put their phones away carefully.

5. Police Decipher the Code Word

Some practitioners don't think cell phone security is a concern because they speak in code. I remembered an incident my neighbor told me about.

Several years ago, my neighbor was sent to the province women's forced labor camp for her faith in Falun Gong. She met another practitioner who told her that after she was arrested, police played a voice recording of her phone call, even though she spoke in code, the police understood everything she talked about.

6. Shielding Bag Not 100% Safe

Some practitioners put their cell phones into the packaging of instant noodles, thinking the very thin layer of reflective materials can shield the signal. There are also several different shielding bags, but I no longer use them anymore.

I used to believe in these shielding bags because when I put my cellphone in such a bag and used another phone to call the one in the bag, it showed no connection or no signal, so I thought the signal was blocked.

However, it might not be correct. We only tested it in a simple way, but we do not have professional listening devices. In addition, technology is changing rapidly and listening devices are constantly upgrading. The fact that it worked then doesn't mean it works now.

7. Do Not Talk about Falun Dafa Using Home Phone or Work Phone

A senior female practitioner was sentenced to years for her faith. When she was released, she couldn't straighten her back due to the torture she suffered in prison, and even walking on her own was difficult. Since she couldn't go out to tell people the facts of Falun Dafa face to face, she started to utilize her home phone to call people and raise awareness of the persecution. And she did this for a couple of years. And in recent years she started to produce Falun Dafa materials. Unfortunately, she was arrested last winter and is still detained in the detention center.

8. Cell Phones Cannot Be Used to Surf Both Minghui.org and Regular Websites

There is a female practitioner who holds her cell phone all the time. She told others that this phone was a special one which has no sim card and it was very safe. She accessed Minghui.org from her home and her office. When she talked about sensitive topics, she had the phone nearby.

One day she told a fellow practitioner that she didn't keep her promise and accessed regular websites with that phone. It is very dangerous since when we browse regular websites, some can detect the phone information including what other websites the phone visited before; what’s installed on the phone; the location of the phone, etc. Even when the phone is disconnected from the internet, it will record voices and upload to the website once it is connected to the internet. 

So fellow practitioners, in the future, when you meet anyone who claims that his/her cell phone is only used for reading Falun Dafa books, doing the exercises, or sending forth righteous thoughts, etc, please do treat it with caution.

9. Do not Install Regular Applications on Specialized Cell Phone 

There are truly specialized cell phones which are developed by practitioners with special skills. We cannot access any regular website on such phones. However, some still installed regular applications such as a master key. This becomes a big security loophole because many regular applications have a hidden back door.

10. Minimize Usage of Regular Applications

Some practitioners uninstalled WeChat and QQ because they are well-known applications with security concerns. But they still use Taobao and PayPal. Actually, most applications have security concerns, including very popular ones such as TikTok and Volcano.

Some practitioners couldn't stop using regular apps. When you tell them that app A is not secure, they would install app B; if B is also not secure, then they use C..... There is always an excuse to use a regular app.

11. Cell Phone Returned By Police Cannot Be Used Anymore

Sometimes the police will return the cell phone after the practitioner was released. Such a phone must not be used again. It is very likely that the police have done something to it such as installing tracking software (hidden in the system) or a tracking chip. It would be better not to put this phone at home.

12. Landline Also Needs to Pay Attention to Security

A young female practitioner was arrested and sentenced. When I met her after she was released, I asked how she got arrested. She said that a group of police officers tricked her into opening the door. After they entered, she saw one holding a piece of paper with the detailed address of her home and her nickname. She remembered that the day before a senior female practitioner had called her home phone and referred to her by her nickname. After she was released, she removed the home phone.

13. Cell Phone Might Expose Your Home Address While Watching NTD TV

Some practitioners' families like to watch NTD TV. They must also pay attention to cell phone security. Many people always have their cell phones around and cell phones are always collecting data. After watching NTD TV for a long time, the cell phone will be screened by big data and be highlighted. Since the cell phone is connected to your home WiFi, your address will also be exposed.

14. Security Concerns of Smart TV 

A fellow practitioner bought a new ultra-thin LCD smart TV with a USB port that can play videos from a USB drive, and it can also connect to the internet. It is very convenient compared to old-fashioned TVs.

Last year the fellow practitioner inserted a USB drive to play Master's lectures and Falun Dafa videos to her family. One day the TV showed a pop-up window asking: Do you want to report this content? It turned out that the TV was connected to the internet when playing videos on a USB drive and the TV automatically uploaded the sensitive content. (Smart TVs are just like cell phones. They require a user name and password when they are connected to the internet for the first time, then automatically log in when the TV is turned on.)

Even if you disconnect the smart TV from the internet while playing sensitive content, the TV will automatically record sensitive content and upload it once it's connected to the internet. 

15. Pay Attention to Voice Recognition

We all know that fingerprints can be used as a unique identifier to confirm a person. Now the voice can also be a unique identifier.

According to practitioners who have been arrested in the past two years, the police recorded samples of their voices. If the practitioner's voice sample is collected, it will be saved to the database. When the practitioner makes phone calls, no matter how they change the phone serial number, or change the sim card, he/she will be easily identified according to the voice signature.

Fellow Practitioners, Please Do Pay Attention to Cell Phone Security

No matter how much I emphasize the security concerns of cell phones, there are always some practitioners who ignore it, saying that I have fear. Some even laughed at me and said they’ve been like this [using their phones the way they did] for many years and nothing had happened.

In the past when one practitioner’s material site was compromised, the surrounding practitioners immediately cut off the contact. However, things are different in the past two years. According to articles published on Minghui.org, there are many places where practitioners were monitored for a long time before being arrested in groups. Some of their families weren’t spared either.

The police have a lot of patience and they would wait for the right time to take the most destructive move. Those practitioners who do not pay attention to cell phone security please do think twice about it! 

Related Article:

Paying Attention to Cell Phone Security

Chinese version available

Category: Perspective