How to Finance the Resistance: Bitcoin Mixing

UPDATE: Bitmixer.io is no more. However, this article outlines some alternative strategies.

The resistance needs money. That’s about as basic a statement as it gets. You need to buy things, and you need those purchases to go unnoticed and untracked by the powers that be. You might like the idea of dealing in cold, hard cash–and that’s almost always a great option–but let’s face it. Some things, you can’t/don’t buy with cash. Enter Bitcoin, Litecoin, and other cryptocurrencies. For beginners, often the first BTC wallet you will set up is somehow linked to your name, whether that be through a bank transfer you made to fund it, or the BTC ATM you had to scan your driver’s license at in order to exchange cash for BTC. (There are other, face to face ways to get BTC but many beginners start with something simple).  I have a Bitcoin wallet attached to my name that I use for all kinds of normal, day to day things.

Let’s say you’ve done this too (try Coinbase or Circle), and you now own Bitcoin. Great! Now you’re ready to jump on Tor Browser and make some purchases, right? No. There’s a wrinkle.

While using bitcoins is an excellent way to make your purchases, donations, and p2p payments, without losing money through inflated transaction fees, transactions are never truly anonymous. Bitcoin activities are recorded and available publicly via the blockchain; a comprehensive database which keeps a record of bitcoin transactions.

All exchanges require the user to scan ID documents, and large transactions must be reported to the proper governmental authority. When you use Bitcoin to pay for goods and services, you will of course need to provide your name and address to the seller for delivery purposes.

This means that a third party with an interest in tracking your activities can use your visible balance and ID information as a basis from which to track your future transactions or to study previous activity. In short, you have compromised your security and privacy.

“Okay,” you’re thinking. “You told me to use Bitcoin and now you’re telling me it’s not anonymous. So, what’s the point?” It just means you have to up your game a bit. There’s always a way, and it’s called Bitcoin mixing. Here’s how it works.security

  • You have your Bitcoin wallet, linked to your name.  You put $100 in it, let’s say, which is about .22 BTC right now. You need to get that BTC unattached from your name.
  • Use proper protocols:
    • Tor Browser, on TAILS operating system, with persistence.
    • Public wifi, not near your home.
    • If possible, use a computer that is not yours or does not ever connect to your home or work internet; a library, internet cafe, etc.
    • Use an anonymous token from a VPN not hosted in the US.
    • Guard your metadata at all costs—or try not to create any.
  • Open another Bitcoin wallet (or 3).
  •  Go to a site like BitMixer, and enter your new addresses. Use the service fee slider to choose an arbitrary amount (if you choose the service fee, then it prevents amount-based analysis.) Choose a time delay as well, as this defeats time-based transaction analysis.
  • Click Continue, and follow the rest of the process to give them the address to your first Bitcoin wallet (the one linked to you) and set an amount to mix.
  • They will take the Bitcoins belonging to you and your name, and give you Bitcoins from somewhere else, that have been mixed with other people’s Bitcoins, to the new addresses you provide.
  • Now you have at least two other Bitcoin accounts, that have no connection to your identity. I’d even consider doing it 2-3 times just to be sure.
  • If you like, make another wallet to transfer all of your mixed Bitcoin to. Just be sure to never access it without setting up the protocols like you did when you created the wallets.
  • You’re ready to make anonymous purchases!

For an few added layers of privacy, make a new Bitcoin wallet to use as a cutout for every purchase you make. When you buy something, use Shapeshift.io to change your Bitcoin into another currency, send it to your one-time use Bitcoin wallet, and then make your purchase.

You might be thinking that this is inconvenient. It’s long and tedious. It’s annoying. It’s too much work, especially when you can use the Amazon app on your phone and buy whatever you need with the credit card they have on file for you. But that’s the situation we’re in. To have any kind of freedom, any kind of privacy, you will have to do inconvenient things. You’ll have to suck up the annoyance and learn how to operate in a world where every word you say and action you take is cataloged by people who have resources at their disposal you could only dream of.

You might be thinking there is nothing you could possibly need to buy that’s so private you need to do all this. Think again, and think very hard. What does money buy? Not just food, clothing, shelter. It buys gear you don’t want to advertise that you have. It buys information, influence. It opens doors that may otherwise be closed to you. If you cannot think of a single instance where those things could be useful to you or your group, then you need to think harder.

You might even be thinking that there’s no point, that the deck is too stacked, the tech is too in their favor, the threat is too much. If that’s the case, if there is absolutely no hope, then why are you involved in the liberty fight at all?

If that’s your belief, so be it. For the rest of you, let’s get to work.

 

Long live freedom!

Offensive Tactics: Infiltrating

The Stop Shouting blog has an EXCELLENT primer on offensive tactics and infiltration that you need to read. We’ve been talking here on the TOWR site about guerrilla tactics, and infiltration is something we haven’t gotten into much yet. It’s a fantastic way to collect intelligence and information, however, and that article has a great argument for why you should be infiltrating.

What I am proposing is for Readers to research, find and then infiltrate any and all organizations that smack of communism, socialism, totalitarianism. In short, the political and economic underbelly of the progressive Borg. You would be right to ask, “to what purpose?”… and I will tell you right here and now that it is to perform the reconnaissance role of the scout, to learn all you can about the goals, aims, structure and individuals that make up these organizations.  Yes, this will entail burying your emotions on the various topics to allow you to get proximity and access.  This will enable you to see with your own eyes, hear with your own ears the workings of the mechanisms..

“Why would I do that?”, you may ask.  Well, somebody has to do it.  People of emotional maturity and a certain outlook… consider it THE opportunity for normal, traditional Americans to DO SOMETHING about the mechanism of the Borg before it is a moment passed.

The next logical question you might be asking is, “What’s the point? What is to be gained?” You’d be surprised. Think of what you could do with a membership list. Think of the intelligence collection potential.

What categories of information are important, and why?  Well, primary importance is assigned to personnel rosters.  It is useful for planning purposes to know WHO you are dealing with.  Plus, if you want to send them gifts or cards or flower arrangements, it makes it easier.  How can you do this without being inside an organization?  Simple… you can compile lists of cars, tags, bearing certain political bumper stickers.  Election season is great for this, as people let their enthusiasms run wild, another example is political yard signs supporting one kleptocrat over another..  So easy to collect, a child can do it!

If the wheels in your brain are turning now, that’s a good thing. But you might have also realized a problem. Let’s say that you like to go to the Moms Demand Action Facebook page for your state and troll them. You use your regular Facebook account, and you have a lot of fun talking smack to them. So, reading this article you’re thinking, wow, I should go infiltrate MDA in my state. Why do you suppose that’s a bad idea?

This is reason #897324 why a gray man persona is something to be maintained. You can’t infiltrate a group if you’ve spent the last 2 years running your mouth loudly and proudly, emblazoning your vehicle with bumper stickers, or showing up at every rally and action you can get your mouse finger to RSVP to. Side note: if your social media profile picture announces your solidarity for gun rights, for instance, you may want to rethink your strategy.

Not everyone can infiltrate groups. Not everyone has the mental capacity for infiltrating, or the mindset. That’s not elitist arrogance talking, that’s fact. Just as not everyone has what it takes to be a rocket engineer, not everyone has what it takes to engage the enemy on a face to face level (and no, I’m not talking about violent encounters. For the record, not only is that not what we’re about, but most of the people running their mouth about that kind of thing don’t have what it takes for that either.) Thankfully, it takes all kinds to make up a resistance, and hopefully you’ve done some brutally honest self-examination to discover what you have the aptitude for, and what you may be simply not cut out for.

So, what is an infiltrator to do once in place and churning out an archive of internal documents, rosters and reports?  That is easy… just refer to the OSS Simple Sabotage Manual (for sanity and legality’s sake, just stick to the organizational behavior parts, mkay?  That is legal to do.)

Go read the rest of the article. And start thinking….perhaps you’ve already rendered yourself useless for face to face infiltration work, but you may know someone else who hasn’t. You may be able to support their operation in terms of collating and organizing their information (in a secure environment, of course). You may even be able to help point them to a group or person to get started.

If you can’t infiltrate in person, you could always sign up for their email lists (with proper security procedures, of course). Make a new identity for yourself (you can get started here). Next, you can sign up for their forums and discussion boards with your new identity. Read their literature and websites; get familiar with their terminology and how to interact with them as a friendly. RESIST the urge to ‘school’ them; you’re there to become one of them, not educate them or convert them. Keep in mind that at this stage, Republican party meetings and groups are to be viewed the same as anything else. They’re all the same now, and those who are faithful to the party above liberty are not much different than your average anti-liberty folk.

There is much to be done, and most of it is done behind the obvious, out of the public eye, without regard for personal credit or accolades. There will be no iconic photos of you in the action, no big Facebook posts announcing your involvement; in fact, you’ll need to keep that part of your activities compartmentalized from everyone you know besides select cell members. Can you accept that?

If you can, then let’s get to work.

6 Things You Should Never Do With a Burner Phone

I get a lot of questions about burner phones. What kind to buy, how to buy, where to buy. The problem is, people go buy them and then use them improperly—completely defeating the purpose.

There is most definitely a right and a wrong way to use a burner phone. We’ll talk about 6 things that you should never, ever, under any circumstances do with your burner. In fact, if you have one and you have EVER done any of these things, you can assume that anything you talked about or did while it was in your possession is already known by your adversary.

1. Buy your burner phone anywhere you normally are.

This one doesn’t necessarily deal with usage, but it’s necessary to mention. If your idea of tradecraft is going to the Wal-Mart 5 miles from your house instead of the Target that’s 2 miles from your house, then please slap yourself for me. Don’t buy it near your work, your home, don’t buy it at the gas station you normally go to, the quickie mart where you get your smokes at 10pm, or anywhere else you ever go to. In fact, it’s also a good idea to not go in your own car. Don’t do anything you normally do, don’t stop anywhere you normally stop, and whatever you do, don’t take your regular phone with you. Have a cover story just in case. Always have a cover.

2. Put all your contacts in your burner.

It might seem like common sense, but you’d be surprised at how many people go out of their way to purchase one “correctly,” and then immediately put their new phone side by side with their old one so they can put all their contacts in it. Or even worse, they simply log into their cloud account and download their contacts backup. I should not have to explain how beyond moronic this is. Burner phones are not for chatting people up. They’re for coordination, passing short bursts of time-sensitive information, etc. In other words, you use them if you have to, and only to speak to another burner phone.

3. Install all your regular apps.

Pay very close attention to these words from Grugq:

Just 4 apps are enough to reidentify users 95% of the time. A complete list of installed apps is unique for 99%.

Your burner phone is not your personal phone. Say that out loud to yourself until you understand it. Your burner has one purpose, and one purpose only. Don’t install Wickr on it and sign in with your regular username. Don’t install Candy Crush on it because that’s how you kill time with your regular phone. Don’t install that one app you can’t do without. Your burner is not your personal phone.

Read the rest at Patrick Henry Society. When you’re done, take a look at the Groundrod Primer class coming up. You need it.

Tradecraft for Patriots: Moscow Rules Part 2

Yesterday we looked at the first part of the Moscow Rules, a list of operating protocols for CIA personnel stationed in Moscow during the Cold War. As we’ve discussed many times, security procedures are remarkably similar regardless of the field or group using them, including the Moscow Rules. Drug dealers, organized crime, and even terrorist groups use tradecraft, and a smart partisan will study their methods, see what works and what doesn’t, and learn from it.

In this article we’ll go through the second half of the Moscow Rules and what they mean to you as a well-rounded partisan.

  • Any operation can be aborted; if it feels wrong, then it is wrong.

Right out of the gate, we see another reference to trusting your gut. Yes, it’s that important. If you’re going out to train with your firearm and suddenly one of your guys wants to bring one of his buddies, if it feels wrong, don’t do it. If you’ve set up a buyer for your firearm and when you get there the guy doesn’t seem right, don’t sell. Use your head, trust your gut.

This brings me to another pair of points. We talked in the last article about people getting turned into informants against groups and individuals, as law enforcement looks to criminalize the patriot movement. The recent case of Schuyler Barbeau is a classic example of how informants are used to put people in jail. More importantly, it’s a quintessential case study in how NOT to act on social media. It’s also a perfect example of why you should vet the people you associate with. We’ll be doing an article specifically on the OPSEC failures in this case—not because we believe that Barbeau didn’t have the right to own an SBR. The Second Amendment secures the right of any citizen to own whatever they want, and to buy and sell that personal property as they see fit. However, the truth is that we live in enemy territory, so to speak. You can bet that Barbeau’s OPSEC and PERSEC failures are being used to full advantage by the authorities, and every single person he associated with is now getting their own info parsed out. The fact that his arrest and imprisonment is unconstitutional does not negate the fact that Barbeau made some basic mistakes. To ignore them is stupid and dangerous. We can be incensed about the unconstitutionality of his arrest while still admitting that mistakes were made and learning from them.

  • Keep your options open.

Again, self-explanatory. Don’t put all your eggs in one basket. Don’t be caught with only one plan and no backups.

  • If your gut says to act, overwhelm their senses.

You can figure out what this one means.

  • Use misdirection, illusion, and deception.
  • Hide small operative motions in larger non threatening motions.
  • Hide an SD card transfer in a friendly hug.

This speaks to some of the smaller gestures that we engage in. When transferring information between yourself and another party, make it a small motion encased in a bigger, innocent motion—such as hiding an SD card transfer in a hug or even handshake.

  • When free, In Obscura, immediately change direction and leave the area.
  • Break your trail and blend into the local scene.
  • Execute a surveillance detection run designed to draw them out over time.
  • Avoid static lookouts; stay away from chokepoints where they can reacquire you.

There is a decent tutorial on detecting and countering surveillance over at ITS Tactical. While you’re over there, check out their piece on performing a self-surveillance. It’s critical that you understand your own movements; you might realize that no matter how many “secure” text apps you have, your actions may be wide open.

  • Once is an accident; twice is a coincidence; three times is an enemy action.

This is one of the more important rules, and one that is pooh-poohed by a fair amount of people. The truth is that it goes back to trusting your gut. Some people—myself included—believe that coincidences rarely happen. If something seems wonky, that’s because it probably is. Pay attention to patterns; things that match, and things that don’t. Pay attention to people. Get training in seeing deception (the Statement Analysis class coming up in February is a fantastic start), and learn to detect changes in their conduct patterns. Learn what motivates the people around you and how that motivation may be used against them—and by extension, against you.

  • Select a meeting site so you can overlook the scene.
  • Keep any asset separated from you by time and distance until it is time.
  • If the asset has surveillance, then the operation has gone bad.
  • Only approach the site when you are sure it is clean.
  • After the meeting or act is done, “close the loop” at a logical cover destination.
  • Be aware of surveillance’s time tolerance so they aren’t forced to raise an alert.
  • If an alert is issued, they must pay a price and so must you.
  • Let them believe they lost you; act innocent.

These are all rules for setting up meetings. They seem pretty logical and obvious, but you’d be surprised at how many people don’t do them or even think of them. People like convenience, and if things are inconvenient (such as setting up a meeting properly, using secure comms or engaging in OPSEC), people don’t like to do them. It takes work to operate correctly. It takes vigilance and attention to detail. It only takes one mistake to compromise not only yourself, but everyone you work with. If you have people you trust to have your back, don’t screw them over by being lax in your dealings.

  • There is no limit to a human being’s ability to rationalize the truth.

The final Moscow rule deals with human nature. We’ve all seen it: the anti-gun liberal who refuses to see the truth, the family members who willfully ignore the situation in our country and prefer to pretend like everything is fine. Another hard and cold truth, however, is that patriots do it too. They refuse to practice safety and security. They refuse to believe that privacy is necessary. They refuse to believe that their Facebook chats and Zello meetings and emails are being watched. They refuse to believe that physical fitness is necessary. They refuse to accept that intelligence is a critical part of the equation, or that having zero knowledge about the irregular threats in their area is dangerous. They even refuse to accept that the people they work with might be untrustworthy or even working against them. The reasons for these rationalizations are myriad, and could fill up an entire series of articles. But the bottom line is that they happen.

As patriots we have to be smarter than that. We have to pay better attention, be willing to learn from our mistakes; in fact, we need to be willing to admit that the mistakes happen at all. Don’t rationalize, don’t sugarcoat. Take hard looks at yourself, your training, your ability to operate. Be willing to accept that you have deficiencies—we all do. Be willing to learn, have a teachable attitude, and seek out the training you’re missing. Start practicing your OPSEC. Start working on your intelligence preparation. Start doing the things you’re not doing now. Share the information and training that you possess, and learn from those who are better than you are.

Educate. Empower. Resist.

Tradecraft for Patriots: The Moscow Rules Part 1

Our Tradecraft for Patriots series has gone through some theoretical and even how-to information on “operating,” as it were, as part of the patriot movement. Today we’ll talk about the Moscow Rules, which were a list of rules for CIA officers and operatives in Moscow during the Cold War. They are steeped in legend, and there is still a debate over whether they were ever written down at all. They stand today as a fantastic list of things you should be paying attention to in your daily life. If you’ve broken away from the standard pyramid leadership structure and are part of a leaderless partisan resistance group, these rules are even more important. While there are historically 10-13 Moscow Rules, ITS Tactical has the expanded list of forty. Today we’ll deal with about half of them.

  • Assume nothing.

If you’ve served in the military, you already can answer the question “What happens when you assume?” Don’t make assumptions. Make logical, fact-based, analytical decisions and predictions, but don’t make assumptions. The stakes are far too high if you’re wrong.

  • Technology will always let you down.

We spend a lot of time talking about electronic communications here at TOWR, but this is a universal truth—and not just about computers or phones or tablets. Technology, period, will eventually let you down. It’ll break, it’ll be obsolete or incompatible or otherwise unusable. Have a system set up where you can communicate without using a single electronic means if necessary. There are ways to do so. Have a backup for your technology so that when it does fail for whatever reason, your group isn’t suddenly in the dark and unable to function.

  • Murphy is right.

Murphy’s Law is alive and well. Plan for it. Expect it.

  • Never go against your gut.
  • Always listen to your gut; it is your operational antennae.

One thing that you’ll see repeated several times in the Moscow Rules is trust your gut. The importance of this cannot be overstated. If it feels wrong, it IS wrong. For instance, we’ve all gotten that uneasy feeling upon meeting someone. Many times we tend to rationalize that feeling away, or are uncomfortable making that snap judgment call, especially if someone says, “Well, you just need to get to know them.” Red flags pop up for a reason. We feel uncomfortable for a reason. How many times have we trusted someone—against those red flags—only to find out later that our gut was right all along? I’ve been as guilty as the next person in the past, and if you’re honest with yourself, you’ll realize that you’ve done it too.

This principle can be applied to everything from people to situations. Every other day it seems, there’s a CRISIS SITUATION where people want you to strap on your gear and turn into Patriot Power Ranger because It’s Time To Start The Ruckus. Remember—it’s never time to START the ruckus. That’s not what we believe, it’s not what we do. Before passing on information or videos of yet another pissed off guy wearing a skull bandana, vet the information. Check out the people calling for action. Who are they? What do they want? What is their track record for integrity? WHY do they want you to act? What action do they want you to take? And what do they or their group gain if you do act?

Again, if it feels wrong, it is wrong. We’ll be doing an article later on some of the ways you can spot agents and informers, by the way. For now, trust your gut. Every time. That brings us to the next rule.

  • Everyone is potentially under opposition control.
  • Don’t look back; you are never completely alone. Use your gut.

The cold hard truth is that there are government agents in the patriot movement, and some people in the patriot movement get turned by the government into informants. Remember—the argument that “I’m not doing anything illegal” doesn’t matter. According to the government, if you believe in limited government involvement, denounce the surveillance state, and are willing to stand up for individual liberties, you’re a domestic terrorist. They’re willing to entrap you, use your private life against you, and spy on you as long or as intrusively as they have to in order to stop you from screwing up their control agenda. They have no scruples, no morals, no limits. Don’t underestimate their capability, and don’t for a second assume (see Rule 1) that all the people you work with are solid just because they say they are.

This flows into what I was just talking about with using your gut. Think about it. If you wanted to identify patriots willing to offensively target the government as opposed to those who would DEFEND ourselves against the government, what faster way than to manufacture a situation to draw them out? If you wanted to have an excuse to ramp up the disarming of the citizens, what better way than to manufacture a situation that brings all the ‘crazies’ to the yard?  If there’s a crisis going on, vet everyone involved. Ask questions. Ask for proof. If someone says they have video, ask to see it. If they claim to have screenshots, ask to see them. If they aren’t willing to provide it, or if your gut says something’s not right, pay attention.

  • Go with the flow; use the terrain.
  • Take the natural break of traffic.
  • Maintain a natural pace.
  • Establish a distinctive and dynamic profile and pattern.
  • Stay consistent over time.
  • Vary your pattern and stay within your profile.

These all deal with movement. Don’t drive like a bat out of hell, swerving in and out of lanes to “lose any tails.” Don’t draw attention to yourself. These may look at first glance like they’re contradictory but they aren’t. Notice words like “dynamic” and “consistent.” It doesn’t mean do the same thing every time. It means be consistently dynamic. Be consistently changing, but stay within the profile you’ve created for yourself.

  • Be non threatening: keep them relaxed; mesmerize!
  • Lull them into a sense of complacency.
  • Know the opposition and their terrain intimately.
  • Build in opportunity but use it sparingly.

These are pretty self-explanatory. Know the enemy. Understand how they work. That’s Sun Tzu 101 anyway, and as for the rest, they mean exactly what they say. Don’t run around acting like a crazy person looking for a fight. If your mindset is right, you’re NOT looking to start the fight.

  • Don’t harass the opposition.

This should be pretty near the top. A lot of patriots think that standing up for liberty must include harassment of the opposition. There is a difference, however, between standing and harassing. For a visual of this in action, think about the I Will Not Comply Rally that took place almost exactly a year ago today in WA State. A few thousand people stood: respectfully, resolutely. The attendees cleaned up after themselves, showed respect to the WA State Patrol officers who were there at the Capitol building, and conducted themselves like free men with character. Now contrast that with the Occupy movement. They destroyed every area they took up residence in, desecrated everything they touched, and engaged in violent crime, disrespect of people and property, and general mayhem.The #BlackLivesMatter movement is another example.

One of the cornerstones of being a III% or patriot is character. How do you conduct yourself, not just in your personal life but your online persona as well?

  • Pick the time and place for action.

Don’t allow yourself to get cornered. Don’t let the enemy choose where and how you act—that will trap you into REacting, instead of ACTING. Make a plan, make sure the people involved (and only the people involved) understand the plan, and then execute that plan. This goes for everything from communication plans to bug-out plans to anything else.

In the next segment we’ll take a look at the last half of the expanded list. For now, the takeaways are simple. If you remember nothing else, remember this: Trust your gut. Make plans, and expect them to go wrong. Make backup plans. Conduct yourself with character and integrity.

Educate and empower yourself and others. Resist.