Burn Notice Spy Tips Season 1 Episode 11

Spy Tips on Bugging Cell Phones, Good Traps, Codes, and more

Double blackmail’s a classic. It’s as old as the pyramids, y’know. You pose as a fellow target of your own blackmail scheme. That way, you’ll always know what the victims are up to. Pros use it all the time.

If you want to bug a cell phone wirelessly, you’ll need a lot of specialized scanning equipment, and a computer to deal with the encryption. I prefer a hands-on approach. You just bug a duplicate phone and swap out the SIM card, so the new phone has the same number. Your target will talk all day, certain that no one could possibly be listening.

Having a gun to your head is all about timing, finding the right moment to make your move. Best to snap the trigger finger first. After that, it’s mostly downhill.  

Whether you’re protecting a client, monitoring electronic surveillance, or meeting the man who burned you, you’ve gotta be patient. In the real world, covert ops doesn’t involve many car chases or gunfights. Mostly it’s just hurry up and wait. Not too exciting. But you wait and you watch and you stay alert, because, at any minute the job can get way too exciting.

There are two basic ways to blow up a car. Use the gasoline in the tank, or provide your own explosive. They’re two techniques that use opposite ends of the car and are disarmed differently. Some people prefer the gas tank. Tends to look more like an accident but it’s less reliable. Others prefer plastic explosive on the battery, wired to the ignition.

When you’re communicating in code, sometimes you just have to hope that whoever you’re talking to is smart enough to figure out what you’re saying. Use a code that’s too simple, and it will get broken. Use a code that’s too complex and you’re just talking to yourself.

In any operation, communicating silently is often essential. Chalk marks, an unusual arrangement of objects – anything that stands out from the background will do. A piece of cloth on a window.

A warehouse door is going to be reinforced, but the walls aren’t. And the areas under the windows don’t have load-bearing beams.

A good trap doesn’t scare people, it makes them curious. A speeding truck makes people scatter. A slow-moving truck, on the other hand, makes people want to take a closer look.

You’re a funny guy. You’re trained, aren’tcha? Hmm? Lemme guess. Special Forces? See, me, I’m an ex-Green Beret. Admit nothing, deny everything, make counteraccusations.

For any operative, stashing weapons is second nature after a while. Spies hide guns like squirrels hide acorns. You never know when you’ll need some firepower, or where you’ll be when you need it.

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