Could YOU disappear in the digital age?


Writer Evan Ratliff pondered the same question while writing an article for Wired magazine about people who for various reasons had tried to start over with completely new lives .  A few months later he found himself a willing volunteer to find out firsthand what the experience entailed.  With a 24 hour head start, $2000 cash stuffed in his belt and a fake office to set up in Las Vegas he drove his Honda Civic across the Bay bridge, then out of California in a bid to disappear entirely.  Leaving behind family, a girlfriend, and any semblance of a normal life for a month while assuming an entirely new identity.

The magazine periodically published clues and made accessible to their online community all the information a private investigator might be privy to, as well as placing a $5000 bounty on Evan's head.  His travels took him across the country a few times, his disguises changed almost daily and online groups spontaneously emerged to track and document his every move.  Amateurs and professionals from coast to coast took to the chase disseminating all the details they could uncover, staking out airports and bars, even trying to glean details from acquaintances as varied as his cat sitter.

In the end it wasn't nearly what Evan had expected when he began.


From the Upcoming ueue, submitted by renderanything.

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Just read this article, it's ridiculous. Facebook and twitter are not essential to life. Wired forgets how 90% of the world lives. The people in this article couldn't find anyone over the age of 40 because they forgot what a phone book looks like...
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There is a difference between truly wanting to dissapear and only wanting to see how far you would get if some of your contacts openly feed the searchers, like in this case.

1st thing that still is possible, is to more drastically cut off any ties to your past life. Next just not use and stop the addiction to the digital communities like Facebook or Twitter. That would cut off about 80% of the possibilities to find anyone.

And the rest is all about staying anonimous, doing only jobs that want to be paid unoficially and without being much worse or better than the next guy, paying as much with cash as possible and try to avoid being seen in general.
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Hmmm...well, this was interesting. I guess with all the people trying to find him you could say that would be like trying to disappear when you're wanted by the law, buuuuut- if a well-prepared, determined and disciplined person decided to vanish without attracting the attention of the cops first they'd be damn near impossible to find.
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