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Hidden Spy Camera & Mic Found Inside Digital TV Box

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posted on Feb, 18 2009 @ 03:20 PM
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Originally posted by Frontkjemper
There was a news article out there a few months ago explaining that the digital tv companies wanted to put a microphone and a camera inside the boxes to help match the right ads to the right people.

Never heard anything more except that people didn't like the idea.

Maybe they went through with it after all?


Husband: "I'll be right back, I've got to go again..."

Wife: "You really should see a doctor about that diaher..."

TV: "Trying to watch your favorite TV show only to get interrupted by diaherrea? Try maximum strength Kaopectate! Results. Fast."





posted on Feb, 18 2009 @ 03:21 PM
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My standard reply to all of these claims:

If the information is collected, it has to be transmitted back to 'base'. That would happen through the coax cable (or wirelessly, but the same principle applies).

It is possible to rig a gateway to monitor the traffic going to and from the converter box, so it would be impossible to transmit collected data and guarantee that no one would find the data and realize what it was.



posted on Feb, 18 2009 @ 03:22 PM
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After 15 years in the CATV business...I can tell you...beyond a shadow of a doubt...this is entirely...possible!

Most MSO's Comcast,Charter, Time Warner, etc, utilize their full bandwidth... from 10Mhz up to 1000Mhz. All of them utilize the "return path" generally between 10 & 80Mhz, for advanced service such as high speed internet, digital phone and yes...the digital converter boxes that give you you TV signal.
All have the ability...the ability mind you, to do exactly as you fear... spy on you...
However... I can say from my experience it isn't happening!!! At least to the point of unauthorized surveillance. Of course they know your viewing habits, especially your PPV purchases. All your incoming and outgoing email runs through their servers. And if you have the digital phone product... believe it or not you have less to worry about. The MTA's employ VOIP technology basically turning your voice into little packets of data...streaming them up the return path to a CMTS then into a phone switch. The major players are now fighting the feds because they basically provide an untraceable phone service to their customers. So...let not your heart be troubled... Comcast and the other big boys really don't need this kind of trouble. they need your monthly subscription



[edit on 18-2-2009 by glimmerman]



posted on Feb, 18 2009 @ 03:34 PM
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Originally posted by RainMan_DOT

Originally posted by drsmooth23
Ill say this for the 400th time here on ATS.

Converter boxes have no way to transmit a signal


Well i know better than to listen to you because i have read all the paper work that comes with the converter box and they CAN emit signals. just read the documents that come with it and you would know better.


How? what is its mechanism for transmitting? hook it up to a phone line? no phone jack. hook it up to the internet? no cat5 output. if you pull out a wifi card then you might be onto something, but they didnt "find" one of those now did they? are there new transmitting technologies we dont know about? probably.

ok so while your reading, go grab your digital alarm clock manual and you will find the EXACT same statement about being able to TRANSMIT. they also have cameras in them so your boss can see if you slept in late.....

if its electronic in ANY WAY, its going to have an RF disclaimer, standard practice for anything that uses power.

[edit on 18-2-2009 by drsmooth23]



posted on Feb, 18 2009 @ 03:37 PM
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Lol that isn't a camera, it's a piezo-electric speaker used to make the beeping sounds when the user presses a button or any other purpose the box needs to beep to alert the user for. The other thing the guy points to is a variable resistor.
Those two things are NOT a camera and microphone. Good God the guy in that video is either dumb or trying to fool people who don't know better.



posted on Feb, 18 2009 @ 03:38 PM
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Originally posted by RainMan_DOT
Ok this is for the people who want proof that your DTV box can transmit signals but dont want to look for the evidence. It is found in the FCC Compliance statement, which states "This device generates, uses, and can radiate radio frequency energy and, if not installed and used in accordance with the instructions, may cause harmful interference to radio communications." There you go. Also here is a link to a pdf so you can see it for your self.

www.freedtvshop.com...


Radio Frequency is for the remote. yes, it interfaces with a remote, but i GUARANTEE there is NO WAY to send back a 1.5 Mps VIDEO signal.

your microwave also "transmits" RF when cooking food, it doesnt mean GE knows what type of hot dogs your cooking up though....



posted on Feb, 18 2009 @ 03:39 PM
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reply to post by darklife
 


I didn't even view the video... but that makes total sense!



posted on Feb, 18 2009 @ 03:43 PM
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Originally posted by RainMan_DOT

Originally posted by drsmooth23
Ill say this for the 400th time here on ATS.

Converter boxes have no way to transmit a signal


Well i know better than to listen to you because i have read all the paper work that comes with the converter box and they CAN emit signals. just read the documents that come with it and you would know better.


Of course they have a way to emit signals, it's called running RF into your TV set so it gets a signal from the box lol. Some of you guys will believe anything



posted on Feb, 18 2009 @ 03:43 PM
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oops double post

[edit on 2/18/2009 by darklife]



posted on Feb, 18 2009 @ 03:43 PM
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reply to post by RainMan_DOT
 


This is just the FCC mandated "disclaimer" that it can...cause ... interference...

Your off the shelf, store bought converter for the digital transition is a one way receiver...



posted on Feb, 18 2009 @ 03:50 PM
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reply to post by darklife
 


www.usaspyshop.com...

1" by 1" though.. of course they come in smaller sizes

It does look like a camera, but why is it stuck to a transformer. The front cover of that device is slightly see through though, not sure how well it'd work with visible light spectrum on a tiny button cam like that, it's probably more designed for iR remotes to go through. As you know iR makes things look much different in reflectivity and what is see through and what is not. Try night vision on a camera and play around.

Another one here... www.usaspyshop.com... see size compared to RCA jacks.. not bad.

That 'mic' is definitely not a mic. Looks like a ceramic cap. Electret condenser mics in laptops are about 4mm by 4mm and black in colour. I work with them all the time. They look like this:
www.alibaba.com... or similar.
They'll often have black rubber casing around them to reduce vibration. Foam covers are also used to stop any wind noise and to decrease excessive volume/distortion.

On the CT side of me I have heard multiple reports and stories of this but the first evidence is this one. I think anyone reading this thread with a box like that should open and check. There may be a small number of them with the camera/mic so when people do check and find nothing it is debunked.
Most of the posts calling bluff without any evidence are from -ve or low point members, commonly associated with the usual disinfo crew.

Which means we may be onto something! hehehehe



posted on Feb, 18 2009 @ 03:50 PM
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reply to post by drsmooth23
 


Obviously a hoax.

But, that's not to say that it can't or won't be done. I remember back when I was in college (10 years ago) they were discussing this. The big talk was about the switch to HD in 2006 ... LMAO ... that obviously didn't go to plan. Three years later and we've finally made it. Anyway there was talk about Nielson's and cable companies putting camera's & microphones in their receiver boxes.

If they can get these devices into a mobile phone - why wouldn't they be able to get them into a receiver ... yes, transmitter (just like your cell phone) and all. You don't need a direct cable or internet connection to your receiver. You can still receive your signal through airwaves and your receiver could broadcast whatever it's picking up in your living room or bedroom (or kitchen) and send it via cell tower back to the archives. The only place that may have a problem is in rural areas where cell signals are not that saturated ... yet.



posted on Feb, 18 2009 @ 03:51 PM
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Originally posted by darklife
Lol that isn't a camera, it's a piezo-electric speaker used to make the beeping sounds when the user presses a button or any other purpose the box needs to beep to alert the user for. The other thing the guy points to is a variable resistor.
Those two things are NOT a camera and microphone. Good God the guy in that video is either dumb or trying to fool people who don't know better.



After watching the video...and... LMAO... I have to agree!



posted on Feb, 18 2009 @ 03:52 PM
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Originally posted by drsmooth23

Originally posted by RainMan_DOT
Ok this is for the people who want proof that your DTV box can transmit signals but dont want to look for the evidence. It is found in the FCC Compliance statement, which states "This device generates, uses, and can radiate radio frequency energy and, if not installed and used in accordance with the instructions, may cause harmful interference to radio communications." There you go. Also here is a link to a pdf so you can see it for your self.

www.freedtvshop.com...


Radio Frequency is for the remote. yes, it interfaces with a remote, but i GUARANTEE there is NO WAY to send back a 1.5 Mps VIDEO signal.

your microwave also "transmits" RF when cooking food, it doesnt mean GE knows what type of hot dogs your cooking up though....


Actually the remote probably uses infered light. Few remotes use radio besides high end stereo systems so you can change the volume or channel in a different room of the house.
The only radio electronics in one of those DTV boxes is to send a signal to your TV. That's it, nothing more.

Like I said in my last post, those devices the guy points to are not what he says they are. I would know since I have designed electronics from scratch for many years and can point out every part in that box and tell you what it is and probably does.

Even if the designer of that box wanted it to send a signal out how would they do it? Someone mentioned power lines. Give me a break. By the time any signal got to the powerlines transformer outside the house it would be too weak to get past it. It would work for closed buildings but that's it. They used to do the same thing with AM radio back in the day to send a schools radio station thrue the power lines, but it was restricted to the school. If it were microwave it would have too short of a distance to be picked up well. Besides this is just silly guys, think about it. If you want to see if the thing emits radio energy that contains information from this so called camera and microphone there are a ton of ways to see if that's happening. Any ham radio operator or RF engineer would have known it was happening and already complained by now!
Silly, just silly.



posted on Feb, 18 2009 @ 03:56 PM
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There was two reported incidents around 2005 - 2006 of UK Digital Converter boxes transmitting "distress" signals and the spooks showing up.

Take the site with a large pinch of salt, it is obvious to me that they are not too open minded. The content of message is what is important in my opinion.

www.theregister.co.uk...
www.theregister.co.uk...



Here's something I haven't seen mentioned yet and it's just a thought outside of the box:- Maybe the return path for the video and audio feed is not carried on a transverse electromagnetic wave - thus evading detection by publicly available receiving equipment.



posted on Feb, 18 2009 @ 04:01 PM
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Here's something I haven't seen mentioned yet and it's just a thought outside of the box:- Maybe the return path for the video and audio feed is not carried on a transverse electromagnetic wave - thus evading detection by publicly available receiving equipment.

Well say there really was a camera and microphone in that DTV box (which there obviously is not!) then how would you get the video/audio feed out of the box and into the spys monitoring equipment w/o a radio transmittion? It isn't possible. Video signals no matter what contain radio frequencies. A standard video signal can go up to 2MHz for the bright white colors of standard composite video.
There is no way to transmit a video signal even over wire w/o radio frequencies being used.
However audio can be since audio that the human ear can here ends somewhere around 25KHz.
Just adding my techy input

Oh and to send video over powerlines is NOT possible w/o major loss of signal over a short distance. Try to get 2MHz to run over a power line for more then a few feet and see if it's possible


[edit on 2/18/2009 by darklife]



posted on Feb, 18 2009 @ 04:05 PM
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I actually am an electronics manufacturing engineer and I just have to weigh in on this. THIS IS A HOAX.Period. And I'll tell you why.
1. As someone already stated there is no way for this device to transmit a signal. It acts as an analog reciever with an analog to didgital signal convertor.
2. Even a low voltage D.C. transformer will create enough E.M. interference to disrupt a signal when it is in that close of proximity to an obviously un shielded digital camera, especially a cheap one like the one shown on the video.
3. To me the camera appeared to not even be on a circuit. A thru-hole mounting would visible and you would see the leads. An SMT mounting would be obvious as the camera unit would be sitting on the board. The camera would probably require an outside power source, as would the mic.
4. Not that any of that matters anyway. See #1.
Just my 2 cents.
Just looked again and I am pretty sure that the "microphone" is actually a ceramic capacitor.

[edit on 18-2-2009 by spookjr]



posted on Feb, 18 2009 @ 04:07 PM
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reply to post by drsmooth23
 


That's not what I've heard. I've read that the "transmission" technique used is now in the electrical lines, and that you should UNPLUG your TV when not in use. I've alread read that cameras and microphones are installed in ALL the new HDTV's and converter boxes, and that's the very reason for conversion in the first place. I would not be surprised at this technology, because at least 15 years ago, I heard there were cameras in cable boxes. Since then many people now use satellite or HDTV technology, and I wouldn't be surprised about govt spying in our homes, especially since they're already spying on every email and telepone call, even romantic conversations between American soldiers in Iraq and their wives.



posted on Feb, 18 2009 @ 04:10 PM
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You forgot to mention the sentence in the owners manual that says “please keep HIDDEN CAMERA free from obstructions”

Not to mention if people were being monitored in REAL TIME just to keep the ratio somewhat manageable. You would need several million people watching the feeds. Or one alien super computer.

These are the same people that worry about the Government and big bro watching them and then turn around post every last detail about themselves including what they happen to be doing a any given second.. UGH



posted on Feb, 18 2009 @ 04:12 PM
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Come on guys, look where the camera is and tell me how the F*** will it be able to see anything.
Its BEHIND the face plate.

Ok lets entertain the concept for the second it deserves

1. If the faceplate was CLEAR (and its not!!!) the cam MIGHT be able to see you.
2. Now adjust the lens so it can focus through the faceplate.
3. Dont move, or youll be out of focus.
4. Stay in the TV room or you wont be seen.

5 Use some logic people ...really!

Ok, if your really buy this stuff, throw a towel over you top box, problem solved.



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