Most wireless carriers track your cellphone usage by keeping tying your location and data use to your phone’s unique ISMI (International Mobile Subscriber Identity) number. But a new privacy-first wireless carrier is doing things differently.
INVISV’s new PGPP (Pretty Good Phone Privacy) not only doesn’t track your data usage… it’s designed to make it difficult for the carrier to do so even if it tried. PGPP is available in beta today with support for smartphones running Android 10 and higher.
In a nutshell, PGPP has a few tricks up its sleeve. The first is that the carrier has a system that allows it to know that you’re using its service (so they can send you a bill) without knowing your phone’s IMSI number. The second is that your IMSI can be changed multiple times per month for added security. And the third is that the company’s Relay privacy system keeps the carrier and websites you visit from seeing your IP address or other information that could be used to track you.
In a nutshell, when you use Relay to visit a website or use an app, your phone will send an encrypted signal to INVISV, which will then pass that request along to a second relay point which is operated by the Fastly, a content delivery network. This has the effect of separating your IP address from your data traffic, with neither INVISV nor Fastly having all the information required to know which data was sent to which phone.
Customers who just want the Fastly service can download and install the PGPP Beta app and pay $5 per month to use it with their existing cellular network.
But if you want to go all-in on the PGPP network, you have two options:
- Mobile Pro ($90/month) with 30 random IMSI changes per month and unlimited high-speed mobile data in the US, EU, and select other countries including the UK
- Mobile Core ($40/month) with 8 random IMSI changes per month and 300MB/day or 9GB/month high-speed data (rate limited to 256 Kbps after daily limit is reached) mobile data in the US, EU, and select other countries including the UK
There are a few things to keep in mind before signing up though. One is that you’ll need a phone with eSIM support, as the only way to sign up for the service right now is by installing an Android app and then using that app to purchase a data plan.
Perhaps more importantly though, PGPP only supports mobile data. It does not support phone calls or SMS. While that might be a big problem for folks who are already using secure, private communication apps like Signal, if you want to use your phone for actual phone calls or old-school text messaging, then you might want to stick with your current plan.
You can find more details about PGPP at the INVISV website.
The problem is that just about every service provider demands a phone number as proof of you being a real person, because a new phone number is hard to get and is very difficult if not impossible to get without using your real identity. Also, people can be very stupid and very stubborn about their computer habits, getting confused by the idea of using something other than iMessage, Discord, or Instagram, let alone exchanging public keys, or angrily saying they don’t care about all the problems typical computer use creates, so you’ll need a phone number to talk to them. And no one talks in person anymore.
I wish things could be done differently, because they can, they’re just choosing not to.
I suppose PGPP is better than nothing, given that mobile ISPs are all part of the surveillance system that’s trying to make itself able to make calls on whether everyone is a good person or not, and this will disrupt that kind of profile formation a little, but I don’t think it’s enough on its own to keep you from being stuck being nothing more than the sum of your past mistakes.
Don’t expect it to protect you if you were at a riot or protest the government actually didn’t want to occur.
Another way of looking at it, is that none of the things you are talking about matter to the typical person at all, because those things aren’t a problem for them.
Asking them to do something out of the ordinary to accomplish something that would otherwise require almost no effort, is a waste of time.
For example, I’ve never used iMessage, Discord, or Instagram, so if that was your preferred method on discussing something, there is sand you could go pound.
We humanity have a “big tech coalition” problem that must be solved. They follow each other, make meetings, have mutual decisions (sun valley dear..) and then every surfaces of our lives are going under their sulveillance.
Remember, before 2010’s they didn’t ask for phone numbers of registrants. They waited some years until people to be addicted their services then push what they want.
So world’s politics didn’t undestand what’s happening at early 2000’s because of non-tech people. I don’t believe if still there is “known style government aka classical government” in the world. Governments (people) lost their every field to Big Tech.
Big tech is a “new government”.