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Gadgets & Software

Edward Snowden's Haven Android App Turns Your Smartphone Into A Guard Dog

Tilak

Tilak

Sat, 23 Dec 2017

A new app called Haven: Keep Watch has been released on Android. The Haven app is collaboration between the Freedom of the Press Foundation and The Guardian project. This application protects your personal space from intruders by using your mobile's onboard sensors to detect an unexpected guest. Haven has been designed for investigative journalists and human rights defenders as well as the general public who want a monitoring system without any corporate intervention.

The app works in the following manner. While setting up the app you need provide threshold limits for the smartphone's sensors and a countdown timer after which the app will start monitoring giving you time to leave the room. The Haven app uses your accelerometer to monitor vibration of a surface or movement of the smartphone, the ambient light sensor to detect changes in light, the microphone to pick up ambient noise and your camera to detect people. Once any intruder causes any commotion in the room and these changes are above the noise, light and vibration threshold the Haven app kicks into action.

Haven Keep Watch (BETA)

Once the thresholds are breached, two things happen. An alert is sent to another specified smartphone through text message or Signal. For the uninitiated, Signal is a secure communication app that encrypts all information passing through it. The recordings made by the Haven app will be stored locally and if required sent to another smartphone through Signal or Tor. Haven is still in its beta phase on Android and will be made available to the iPhone users in future.

The Haven app is also useful for people who do not want corporate overlords overlooking them. For example if you use Nest or Amazon Cloud Cam the company behind it has some control over your private information. In Haven you eliminate the need for corporate intervention. The recordings are stored on your smartphone and communicated to another device only through secure communication channels.

Edward Snowden who is the president of the Freedom of the press foundation says that any present modern mobile has all the required amenities to act as a modern guard dog. The buzz about this new app is also due to its creator Snowden, who is a former NSA contract employee and shot to limelight with his revelations he made about PRISM, a global surveillance project maintained by US National Security Agency, which was considered as a serious offense to data privacy of all internet users.

Source: Github | Google Play

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