Spy Tips on First Meetings, GPS Tracking, and more

When meeting a covert operative for the first time the arrangements can tell you a lot. If they give you a map and a photo, they trust you. A place and a time, they want to check you out before they make contact. A cryptic clue, they just got an irritating sense of humor.

Sometimes when you meet a new operative, it’s a good idea to open with an aggressive move. You learn about people when you make them play defense. Reflexes, weaknesses, how they handle themselves under pressure. And even if they are able to counter, it never hurts to tell how far they are willing to go

You can use cell phone towers to triangulate the position of someone’s cell phone but you are going to have problems whenever they go out of range. Use an enhanced GPS on the other hand and you pin point their location in real time almost anywhere on the face of the planet. Try disconnecting a GPS wired into the motherboard, you risk disabling the phone. A much simpler solution is call forwarding.

If you want to empty a building, pulling a fire alarm is useless, no one pays attention unless their actually on fire. A bomb scare next door to your target, strikes the right balance. Everyone clears out and pays attention to the other building.   Click here to read more…

Spy Tips on Surveillance, Covering Your Tracks, and more

One of the reasons surveillance is done is teams is that it’s exhausting sitting a car remaining constantly alert while you watch a mailbox, will knock you out like a handful of sleeping pills. Doing it in shifts, is the only way to make sure you don’t miss something.

Tailing a trained operative, requires a number of time consuming preparations. Everything from acquiring a vehicle they can not recognize or trace to familiarizing yourself with all the local traffic patterns.

Covert security is designed to blend in. People you never notice. Until you see them in action. Which means you have two options. You can sit and wait for an incident to occur, or you can create your own incident.

When you’re looking to get someone arrested, bad guys can’t always be counted on to commit crimes on your schedule. Sometimes you have to give them a little push.   Click here to read more…

Spy Tips on Torture, Fighting, Intelligence Gathering, and more

Jobs in agriculture are a convenient cover. Makes it easy to explain your presence in the field and the boardroom. The only downside is you might have to become an expert on chickpeas.

You can tell a lot about who’s following you by the maneuvers they use. Quick, evasive driving, Casual bailout, feigning car trouble. these are signs you’re dealing with a professional.

Cultivating intelligence assets usually requires some wining and dining. The more connected someone is, the more they know, the more they feel entitled to a little special treatment.

Smart operatives know how to steer the conversation towards the information they need. Clever assets, on the other hand, know how to make the wine-and-dine phase last as long as possible.

Stun guns are a great way to bring down a larger opponent. The only problem is, if you use one on someone who’s touching you, You’ll zap yourself, too.   Click here to read more…

Spy Tips on the Negotiations, Exploiting Assets, and more

There aren’t many rules in the spy trade. There are a few agreements that most intelligence agencies honor, though. Low-level agents get traded, not prosecuted. You don’t shoot foreign operatives if you can avoid it, and you stay away from embassies and consulates.

Consulates are a great place to renew your visa, pay your taxes back home, or find foreign spies working under diplomatic cover.

Like all bureaucrats, consulate employees live in fear of a pissed-off journalist.

Most of the people who work in a consulate are just municipal drones enjoying an overseas post. But the head of security, that guy’s almost always a spy.   Click here to read more…

Spy Tips on Check Fraud, Nitrogen Gas, and more

In the world of intelligence, if an operative hands you a crossword puzzle, chances are you’ve just received a coded message. It’s the art of steganography – sending coded messages that don’t look like messages unless you have the key.

In covert ops, you always wanna be the one setting the meeting. When you’re following someone else’s instructions, they set the agenda, they control the security, and they get to make you jump through hoops to remind you they are in charge.

Check fraud is more about technique than high-tech equipment. Some old checks, a roll of scotch tape, some nail-polish remover, and you’re in business. Nail-polish remover is mostly acetone, which dissolves ink. Get your hands on a check that’s been filled out by the account holder, dissolve everything but the signature, and you’ve got yourself a blank check. Counterfeiters call it “check washing”.

If you want to make a friend, solve a problem for them. No problem to solve? Create one.   Click here to read more…

Spy Tips on Working as a Team, Beating Motion Sensors, and more

As a spy, you get to spend a lot of time alone. Whether you’re in an Indonesian prison, a cave in the Afghan mountains, or the back of a cargo truck, it comes with the job. You’re trained to make the most of it, plan your next move, go over your intel, review your training. But when you’ve cleaned your gun thirty times and reviewed the past tense of every verb in five languages, you start itching to make a move.

Air bags are great for surviving crashes, but they make some evasive maneuvers tough. Gone are the days when you could run through a stand of trees without a face full of nylon. Of course, anything you used to do head-on, you can still do.

When you’re claiming to be someone you’re not, the key is commitment. You’ve got to sell it like your life depends on it. Because sometimes it does.   Click here to read more…