While researching a story for Wired Magazine about people who fake their own deaths, journalist Evan Ratliff began to wonder: How hard would it be to disappear in today's digital world? Email, online banking, mobile phones and other ubiquitous technologies leave traces of ourselves that can be easily tracked. If you wanted to disappear while using these tools, could you?
To find out the answer, he went underground himself, and issued a challenge to his readers: find Evan and win $5000. While continuing to use the Internet, mobile phones — and a variety of disguises — Evan managed to stay on the run for a total of 25 days before obsessive fans tracked him down in New Orleans. The whole story is documented in the fascinating piece he published in the December 2009 issue of Wired.
On April 13, Evan will talk about his experience in a special Geek Reading event for EFF. Join us at San Francisco's 111 Minna bar for Evan's presentation on the questions of privacy, surveillance, and identity raised by his groundbreaking experiment.
Geek Reading: Evan Ratliff
Shedding Your Identity in the Digital Age
Tuesday, April 13, 2010 at 7 PM
111 Minna Gallery
111 Minna Street
San Francisco, CA 94105