They are popping up across the country and no one is admitting to know for sure who is operating them. What is “they”? Rogue cell phone towers called “IMSI catchers” that can turn off encryption on your phone without your knowledge and more:
To show what the CryptoPhone can do that less expensive competitors cannot, he points me to a map that he and his customers have created, indicating 17 different phony cell towers known as “interceptors,” detected by the CryptoPhone 500 around the United States during the month of July alone. (The map below is from August.) Interceptors look to a typical phone like an ordinary tower. Once the phone connects with the interceptor, a variety of “over-the-air” attacks become possible, from eavesdropping on calls and texts to pushing spyware to the device.
Edward Snowden even warned that through these towers your phone could be made to look like it is off when in fact the mic is live and transmitting. I think I’m ready to invest in carrier pigeons.