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Stay Off the Grid, Win $10,000

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 4 years ago | from the running-man dept.

News 228

DariusD writes "Last summer, Wired writer Evan Ratliff wrote a story about how people erase their identities and start over. After it ran, he tried to disappear — spending 25 days on the lam until a few enterprising Wired readers tracked him down through some brilliant hacking and sleuthing. Now we're going to try the experiment again. Evan, Wired, Loneshark Games and I are working with Universal Pictures to do another, similar contest connected to the new film Repo Men, and this time we want you to go on the run. We need four applicants willing to disappear from their lives from late February to late March. If they can stay hidden for that time period, they'll end up with $10,000 each."

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228 comments

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I'm in ! (-1, Offtopic)

justdaven (1238962) | more than 4 years ago | (#31037644)

Oh, shoot, I forgot to disappear!

Re:I'm in ! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31037946)

There's a pubic hair on my keyboard. What the fuck?? I "mow the lawn" so it's not mine. Gross.

Re:I'm in ! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31038140)

There's a pubic hair on my keyboard. What the fuck?? I "mow the lawn" so it's not mine. Gross.

What?? Is this just a random stream of consciouness that has landed onto Slashdot? I puzzled to myself as I tried to think of a witty response to the disappearing think that I hadn't read... maybe it was just a nose hair that had been left untended? or perhas someone had been masturbating furiously over his/her keyboard while they were not looking?

Re:I'm in ! (2, Funny)

cayenne8 (626475) | more than 4 years ago | (#31037962)

Looks like the website has learned how to disappear!!

:)

Maybe it knows the importance of not being seen... [youtube.com]

Re:I'm in ! (1)

Midnight Thunder (17205) | more than 4 years ago | (#31037966)

Just join the club of anonymous, though be careful since the NSA will be calling you a terrorist ;)

I'm in too! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31038200)

You lose already.

Me, on the other hand...

If only I were still Unemployed... (4, Funny)

RemusX2 (726167) | more than 4 years ago | (#31037688)

This is a great opportunity for those unemployed to ,well, still be unemployed!

Re:If only I were still Unemployed... (2, Insightful)

maxume (22995) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038002)

Well, except for the fact that they are selecting 4 people, and they aren't quite so likely to select people that have it easy.

Easy (4, Insightful)

sakdoctor (1087155) | more than 4 years ago | (#31037694)

Easy with one caveat. It would only be easy for people who wouldn't want to take part in the first place.

For the twittering, facebooking, wannabe internet-celebrity, attention whores, who would take part; they'd blow it.

Re:Easy (5, Insightful)

Angst Badger (8636) | more than 4 years ago | (#31037912)

Easy with one caveat. It would only be easy for people who wouldn't want to take part in the first place.

Indeed. All you'd have to do is get a friend to give you a lift to a national park and spend the month camping, and when you need something, walk out to the nearest town and pay in cash. This time of year, you'd probably want to choose a park in the southern parts of the country -- the accompanying Deliverance joke is left as an exercise to the reader -- but that's about it. Even if you're the governor of South Carolina -- the Appalachian Trail is the last place they'd look for you.

Re:Easy (1)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038008)

For that prize, I could even convince a friend of mine to take my ATM cards and start off in the opposite direction, leaving a trail of ATM bills on his way.

Of course I'll make sure my account does not contain my life savings... But it should provide a nice red herring.

Re:Easy (4, Informative)

smclean (521851) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038258)

In the Wired article, Evan regularly logged in to the internet and even conversed with people involved in the hunt.

Clearly this is not the way to disappear from society, so I wouldn't be surprised if the contest includes rules mandating you to do certain things that make you catchable.

If someone with outdoor experience just walked off in to the wilderness, they would not be found. The Appalachian Trail might as well be an interstate freeway compared to the isolation that's possible if you just wander off cross-country.

I'd love 10 grand to go on a month long backpacking trip, and you better believe a lot of other people would too!

Re:Easy (3, Funny)

JackieBrown (987087) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038640)

I'd love 10 grand to go on a month long backpacking trip, and you better believe a lot of other people would too!

The problem is that you will eventually run across mutant wilderness hillbillies.

Re:Easy (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31038276)

This time of year, you'd probably want to choose a park in the southern parts of the country -- the accompanying Deliverance joke is left as an exercise to the reader -- but that's about it. Even if you're the governor of South Carolina -- the Appalachian Trail is the last place they'd look for you.

Take a battery-operated boom box with a CD full of some banjo music just in case anyone from civilization gets too close for comfort. Turn on the banjo music and watch them run.

Re:Easy (1)

epiphani (254981) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038306)

Not to mention that the people with sufficient technical knowledge to successfully evade being tracked down electronically (while still being online) certainly can't afford a month off work with only $10k as a prize.

Make it $100K (and available to Canadians), give me a $10k budget, and I'd probably blow my entire vacation allotment for the year on this.

In fact, I'll arrange be online for several hours a day, and you still won't find me.

Re:Easy (1)

pilgrim23 (716938) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038572)

I am pretty sure the challenge is not re-create the movie Jeremiah Johnson but to accomplish this INSIDE our society. and such CAN be done. Use a pay phone to call, use a public library to connect with the web. live somewhere not your own (like a Salvation Army Hotel or Youth Hostel), pay in cash for everything. that is, carry cash not a ATM, toss your iPhone GPS, and other gadgets, then while at the library learn the great wonder and pleasure of reading a paper book with OUT a Kindel or Sony. Honestly, there really is life after Facebook..

Re:Easy (1)

seanalltogether (1071602) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038718)

They will probably apply some constraints to the contest similar to what the original author did. Maybe require contestants to use a credit cards twice a week, or book a flight at least once during the period or use an ATM once a week maybe.

Re:Easy (1)

IgnoramusMaximus (692000) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038106)

Absolutely.

One can just rent a comfy boat, stock up on freeze-dried food and stay out at sea for months. Even if they find your boat info, how are they going to find you, even with access to satellites? There are tens of thousands of pleasure boats at sea at any given time and they do not have highly visible identification. Any inspections come when you come to port or near some country's shores. And you can always dock in some tropical island that does not have their port authority on the net.

But of course being in the middle of the Pacific would put a damper on all the twittering.

Re:Easy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31038212)

perhaps some sort of satellite modem that connect to tor with?

the ping/lag would be unimaginable, but since you'd be sitting in a boat somewhere in the ocean you'd have nearly endless time to kill... the lag wouldn't really matter.

Re:Easy (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31038626)

I tried asking a Democratic reformer in China, an atheist Iranian, a member of the Tibetan independence movement and a North Korean, but none of them could think of a situation where this might be useful.

If anyone can think of a situation where a person would want to be active online without being found, please post it here. My four friends and I are super-curious now.

from previous discussion [slashdot.org]

Re:Easy (1)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038668)

You got it. Disappearing is actually VERY EASY if you understand what you have to do and actually do it.

Calling ANYONE you used to know is out.
using ANY of your online stuff is OUT.

You have to cut it and leave it all alone, in fact train yourself to use a different name, easy to do if your first name is incredibly common. John's have it really easy.

Everyone who get's caught did so because they did not leave their old life alone.

Bin Laden comes to mind... (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31037714)

Osama's in.... Already for several years, btw...

I'm guessing he'll be getting the 10 grand.

Re:Bin Laden comes to mind... (4, Funny)

tibman (623933) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038060)

Congratulations on winning 10k$ !! Please come down to our office and collect it anytime.. day or night.. we'll wait.

gonna have to pass (1, Troll)

get quad (917331) | more than 4 years ago | (#31037716)

As capable as I am at winning this challenge, I'll have to spectate from behind dual LCD panels, as my job will not permit (and 10k isnt much more than the salary I'd make in the same time period). Good luck to all who have the means to slack for 30+ days!

Re:gonna have to pass (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31037998)

Gentlemen, I am pleased to announce the following: My testicles and penis are larger than the average size by a considerable degree, which women find very attractive. I also possess a great deal of wealth, including sports cars, real estate, works of art, and extensive liquid assets, which are also very desirable to women. In short, your genotype has no chance to survive. That is all.

Re:gonna have to pass (1)

Ethanol-fueled (1125189) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038242)

In short, your genotype has no chance to survive.

You have some competition [bbc.co.uk] way ahead of you. Or, there's always rape, which was how everybody got laid before men made it a property crime in the middle ages.

Re:gonna have to pass (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31038130)

I'm with you - 30 days working gets me approximately $12,500. So unless I was to blow 4 of my 5 weeks vacation on this I would be losing money just trying to win. I'll take the sure thing which doesn't involve sleeping outside in the cold and avoiding any networking.

Re:gonna have to pass (1)

gparent (1242548) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038186)

Who cares? People are going to do this for kicks. The cash is so you don't lose as much money as if you weren't paid at all.

Re:gonna have to pass (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31038190)

Wow, where do you work, and are they hiring?

Re:gonna have to pass (1)

n0tWorthy (796556) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038308)

By using vacation time you could double your income and spend your days on an extended vacation from your dual monitors. Win - win.

Dear Boss, (5, Funny)

boneglorious (718907) | more than 4 years ago | (#31037726)

I'll be out of the office for a month. Please ignore the anonymous person checking stuff into the svn repo, I swear it isn't me...

Re:Dear Employee, (5, Funny)

DeadDecoy (877617) | more than 4 years ago | (#31037812)

That's fine, I'll also ignore sending pay-checks to this anonymous fellow as well, as he clearly isn't you.

Ummmm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31037728)

there are a good many people with the know how and the skill to pull this off. Unfortunately, they make over 10K/mo.

Seems easy (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 4 years ago | (#31037730)

Just get enough money in cash, go to mexico/canada which ever is farther from your normal place of residence and spend the time at campgrounds.

Re:Seems easy (1)

Captain Splendid (673276) | more than 4 years ago | (#31037818)

Heck, if you've got any survival training (I do), forget the campgrounds. You can easily carry tent, gear and a month's supply of food for one person and completely disappear.

Re:Seems easy (3, Interesting)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038042)

Provided your country allows that. Mine doesn't. "Wild camping" is not permitted, it's considered a form of squatting (which is also not allowed).

Police state? Just 'cause I have to inform the authorities when I spend more than 30 days in one place (or not in my usual place)? How dare you say that?

Re:Seems easy (1)

abigor (540274) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038138)

Where the hell do you live? It sounds horrible.

Re:Seems easy (3, Interesting)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038324)

Welcome to the wonderful world of the EU. Of course, my guess is that this law is a relict of about 70 years ago. We still have a few of those.

The worst isn't the law itself, the worst is how people view it. It has been this way for so long that people got used to it and don't even question it anymore. They just do. I'm guilty of that behaviour as well. It wasn't until my first visit to the US that I started to wonder. When you travel to the US, you have to state where you will spend the first four weeks of your trip. No problem for me, I was used to that. It wasn't until I asked where I have to go to inform the authorities that I was going to change my place of residence that I got weird looks.

Until then, even I didn't wonder what this should serve questioned it. And I'm usually quite sensitive to privacy invasion concerns. So I guess if we want to fight the erosion of privacy rights, we have to do it now before people get too used to it.

Re:Seems easy (1)

Captain Splendid (673276) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038594)

"Wild camping" is not permitted, it's considered a form of squatting (which is also not allowed).

You're just not trying hard enough to stay hidden ;)

Re:Seems easy (2, Insightful)

c_sd_m (995261) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038262)

There are huge chunks of crown land in many parts of Canada where any citizen can backcountry camp for free and unregistered. Unfortunately, they also tend to be in places you wouldn't really want to spend March. It'd be an unpredictable time to pack for a month, given that you could have a spring melt or -25C. It'd be a lot more comfortable in a heated yurt or tentipi [tentipi.com] in a national or provincial park, perhaps with some cross-country ski trails for entertainment. They'll claim they want your name but I've never shown any ID when checking in.

Actually, that sounds kinda fun. I'd never be able to carry enough books and wine for a month in the backcountry.

Cake (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31037736)

Camp out in the mountains of the middle east. You can hide away from everyone for decades!

Everybody runs. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31037750)

Don't run.

You don't have to chase me.

You don't have to run.

Everybody runs.

Uh, but you can't drop off the grid... (5, Insightful)

Rich0 (548339) | more than 4 years ago | (#31037766)

The summary seems misleading. From what I understand, you aren't allowed to actually drop off the grid - they want you to actually perform certain activities, check in, provide clues, etc.

Otherwise I'd just take a month off of work and buy a ton of food and go wilderness camping somewhere (Canada would be nice, but not in Feb). There is almost no way anybody would be able to track you down.

On the other hand, I'd never take a month of vacation time just to live like a hermit and maybe win $10k - they really need to up the ante if they want people to do this for real.

It sounds like the contest is just about lying low, but posting hints. That obviously makes you far more detectable than if you were allowed to participate without any constraints.

Re:Uh, but you can't drop off the grid... (1)

boneglorious (718907) | more than 4 years ago | (#31037832)

That obviously makes you far more detectable than if you were allowed to participate without any constraints.

Of course the house wants to win, like always.

Re:Uh, but you can't drop off the grid... (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 4 years ago | (#31037850)

So just do any online stuff at a library early in the morning on your way to the next town, or use wireless outside of any place that offers free wireless. Of course proxy everything through the pc you left on at your own home.

Re:Uh, but you can't drop off the grid... (2, Interesting)

GIL_Dude (850471) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038178)

True, and also have some friends in various locales around the world/country post things to your various accounts as well - without using any proxies.

Re:Uh, but you can't drop off the grid... (1)

Jozef Nagy (1082101) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038588)

"Of course proxy everything through the pc you left on at your own home." Not if the hunters DDoS your home PC. Goodbye home services.

Re:Uh, but you can't drop off the grid... (1)

puddles (147314) | more than 4 years ago | (#31037872)

I didn't see where they actually said you can't drop off the grid, but they do ask that you list five activities or so that you would commit to, without spelling out what those activities may be.

The three things I can't live without? Easy, air, water, food :-)

I'm with you on the wilderness trek thing.

Re:Uh, but you can't drop off the grid... (4, Funny)

noidentity (188756) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038064)

Yeah, I too was disappointed on reading the rules. I was thinking, "yes, living in the basement and rarely going out will finally pay off!"

Re:Uh, but you can't drop off the grid... (1)

Rick17JJ (744063) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038562)

One of the webpages says is temporarily unavailable, so I do not see anything about not being able to just drop off the grid. I was thinking that what I could bury several caches of dried food, water and other supplies in the the most remote parts of the mountains of northern Arizona. I could then remove the battery from my cell phone and go backpacking for a couple of months. As needed, I could restock my pack with supplies from one of my hidden caches. That would be living off the grid.

If the rules required me to occasionally post something on the Internet, I might have to stay closer to populated areas, and then briefly connect to a WiFi hotspot now and then. I would use a directional antenna, which would allow me to connect to the hot spot from at least a little ways away. I would also learn to spoof my MAC address, so to reduce the chances of someone getting to know the MAC address on my computer (or whatever device I was using). I would also delete cookies and probably bock the use of Flash.

If e-mail was what was required, I would not need to use a HotSpot for that. I am a licensed ham radio operator and there are a couple of ways to send email using ham radio equipment. Sailors also have a similar related system called SailMail (or something like that). If that would meet the requirements of the rules, I could just send an email messages from 50 miles or more away, and then quickly break camp and move on to a new location, many miles away.

By the way, I am a mid-50s guy who is way behind the times digitally. I barely even know what Facebook, Myspace and Twitter and tweets are.

Running Man - The Book (1)

Jeng (926980) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038566)

It looks to me that they have basically taken the Running Man show from the book and made it real.

Unlike that bullshit movie that was made with the same title, same character names, but the story was nothing at all like the book.

I imagine they would use the Running Man title if they could get permission to.

Re:Running Man - The Book (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31038648)

It looks to me that they have basically taken the Running Man show from the book and made it real.

Unlike that bullshit movie that was made with the same title, same character names, but the story was nothing at all like the book.

I imagine they would use the Running Man title if they could get permission to.

the ending to the book is priceless.

-0.

Re:Uh, but you can't drop off the grid... (1)

Speare (84249) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038710)

On the other hand, I'd never take a month of vacation time just to live like a hermit and maybe win $10k - they really need to up the ante if they want people to do this for real.

You wouldn't necessarily have to drop off the grid or be a hermit, but going to Japan would knock off about 98% of your pursuers and be a lot of fun at the same time. Sure, some English-speaking network experts also speak or read Japanese (especially American otaku) but the group gets much smaller and at the same time the search work does get harder. Going to a less-popular-but-still-wired-and-weird locale like Korea would be even better. If you didn't win, you still had fun. And if you did win, they just paid for your vacation/sabbatical.

No one will find me... (1)

starbugs (1670420) | more than 4 years ago | (#31037774)

I will definitely apply,
just let me finish moving my stuff back into mom's basement.

Re:No one will find me... (1)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038080)

Don't you think parent's residence is the first place they'd be looking? I would. Then I'm check their friends, I'm sure one of them spills the beans. From my earlier job I still have a wide selection of uniforms, one of them is always convincing. Even and UPS uniform can get a lot of info out of the neighbors, you needn't break the law and claim you're a police officer.

Re:No one will find me... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31038238)

Easy there Sherlock.

Re:No one will find me... (1)

starbugs (1670420) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038464)

1st step in great deception: Make everyone think I'm in parent's basement.
2nd step: make everyone think I only pretend to be in parent's basement.
3rd step: allow everyon

easy (1)

wizardforce (1005805) | more than 4 years ago | (#31037782)

1) Collude with a very good friend. Live in their basement the entire month and never going outside. Split the prize with them at the end.

Re:easy (1)

memnock (466995) | more than 4 years ago | (#31037900)

i know it's hard to say what's "cheating" in this contest, but this sounds like the closest. are you really off-grid if there is a proxy there doing your basics for you?
for example, i think of off-grid would mean that you don't have a phone or a way to communicate with someone else. but if you've got a secretary to screen your calls, that doesn't cut it for me.

Re:easy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31038110)

Write script to automatically tweet things to Twitter or update on Facebook.

If it requires you to directly start the process, have canned responses and set up a server which will acknowledge a telephone call from you to start the script.

Beyond that, go to Utah and live in a cave [details.com] .

Re:easy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31038070)

Rule number seven: I will not collude with family, friends or any third parties regarding my activities as a Runner.

Re:easy (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038298)

Cool, I can have machines I own do it. Set them up in various locations and have them tweet and digg and 4 chan like the average moron.

What's to stop someone from ... (1)

puddles (147314) | more than 4 years ago | (#31037804)

disappearing into Death Valley for a month. Good luck finding me :-)

Re:What's to stop someone from ... (1)

Nadaka (224565) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038062)

Probably the fact that it is Death Valley. Good luck making it out alive. The only places to get shelter from the sun are prone to flash floods. You will have to 100 liters of water to survive a month under ideal conditions, and Death Valley is about as not-ideal as you can get.

You make it sound so harsh (1)

puddles (147314) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038202)

We used to go out to Death Valley regularly. It's not a big deal if you carry enough water and food, and don't take silly risks (or do, if you carry spare parts and tools). My five year old son went out to DV with me when he was nine months old. Camped out in the old Indian summering ground at 9000ft :-)

slashdotted already (1)

heptapod (243146) | more than 4 years ago | (#31037822)

I hope the website gets $10,000 for going into hiding like that!

Better link (2, Informative)

RevWaldo (1186281) | more than 4 years ago | (#31037918)

Re:Better link (1)

kcitren (72383) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038214)

Are these the same people who did Repo! The Genetic Opera [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Repo!_The_Genetic_Opera]? Or are they just ripping it off?

Suspended.. (1)

bsDaemon (87307) | more than 4 years ago | (#31037852)

Site comes up with a 'suspended' page... maybe he should cancel the contest and use the 10k to pay off the bandwidth overages he probably just incurred from this... not to mention the resource spike i'm sure he just hit. looks to have been a shared hosting server. Ouch.

Poof, now you don't. (1)

sigterm9 (1192467) | more than 4 years ago | (#31037922)

Honestly, how hard could it be? 1 new identity, 16 cases of beer. yes please.

Don't do it! (5, Funny)

lupinstel (792700) | more than 4 years ago | (#31037928)

I have seen this setup many times before. Once you sign up you are soon hunted for sport by wealthy businessmen and heads of state. You will disappear forever and "win" the $10,000, but your stuffed and mounted corpse won't be able to spend it from the underground chamber it is displayed in. I have seen this happen; beware.

Obligatory (4, Funny)

PPH (736903) | more than 4 years ago | (#31037948)

  1. Create a phony identity.
  2. Apply for the Wired "Off The Grid" contest.
  3. Stop using that identity for the duration of the contest.
  4. ?????
  5. Profit!

Re:Obligatory (1)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038128)

Sorry, can't spare any of my fake IDs for a month.

Re:Obligatory (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31038634)

Sorry, can't spare any of my fake IDs for a month.

You wouldn't happen to have a Hawaii drivers license with "McLovin" on it, would you?

Re:Obligatory (1)

commodoresloat (172735) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038196)

Kinda difficult collecting the prize money then....

Re:Obligatory (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31038722)

HAHA, disregard that! I suck cocks!

Signed,

    $PhonyIdenity

Pick me! pick me! (1)

Joucifer (1718678) | more than 4 years ago | (#31037976)

I could probably make an easy 10k even if I had a GPS locater on me. Of coarse I live in Wyoming though...so I can't really win either way

What was the point of that "experiment?" (1)

Blakey Rat (99501) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038000)

I read the Wired article, and I never really figured out what he was trying to accomplish with his little experiment. Can anybody fill in the blanks for me?

Re:What was the point of that "experiment?" (1)

WinterSolstice (223271) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038254)

Sure. It's a test of how big a cam-whore you are.

The people who feel the obsessive-compulsive need for celebrity and constantly barrage twitter/facebook/myspace with updates every five minutes are trying to find other people like them to do the same thing, but while running around being sillier than usual.

The rest of us will just scratch our heads and wonder what the world is coming to.

How to win (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31038030)

First, Slashdot the grid...

The Instruction Manual (2, Informative)

chill (34294) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038036)

http://www.howtobeinvisible.com/ [howtobeinvisible.com]

After several months of unemployment, I landed a job a couple weeks ago otherwise this would be a cakewalk.

1. Pay cash for EVERYTHING.
2. If you must use a PC, use a foreign proxy. (To check in by the rules, etc.)
3. If you must use a phone, keep the battery removed unless required by the rules to check in.
4. Don't frequent places you normally do. (If you play tennis a lot, take up bowling, etc.)
5. Head back-country for some extended camping. Alaska, Montana, Idaho, Minnesota or the Dakotas come to mind.

Re:The Instruction Manual (2, Interesting)

Svartalf (2997) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038220)

Interesting link. Ironic though that you have to supply information to the site just to get the guide- isn't it a bit of a violation of the rules of the game giving out information to get info on how to become anonymous? (Hey, I thought that all you need to become Anonymous is be lurking around on 4Chan...)

Re:The Instruction Manual (1)

chill (34294) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038358)

Feel free to buy the book at your local bookstore for cash.

Oh, hell... http://www.canaryislandspress.com/media/HTBI2000.pdf [canaryislandspress.com]

If you like it, buy the newer edition.

Re:The Instruction Manual (2, Interesting)

Rei (128717) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038638)

5. Head back-country for some extended camping. Alaska, Montana, Idaho, Minnesota or the Dakotas come to mind.

Bah, you call that backcountry? Go to Nahanni [wikipedia.org] ;) Under 1,000 people visit the ~11,500 mi^2 park each year, and the only realistic way to get in is by bushplane. Most of the people who do visit stay clustered around the river. It's a place so remote that they actually *encourage* you to not camp or hike in the same places as other people, in order to spread the impact around. Infrared would be pretty worthless at finding you (unless high resolution) due to the high population of large mammal species (bear, moose, etc). And the presence of geothermal features could be used to hide against IR as well. The place has the biggest glaciers in the Northwest Territory, as well as Canada's biggest mountains and deepest canyons, as well as caves, sinkholes, etc -- again, making it hard to find you. And it's highly wooded in most places. You could hike the park naked and as long as you stayed away from the rivers, most people would never know.

Come in with a PLB, 40 pounds of dehydrated food (~4 weeks worth), and backpacking gear. Get everything to a secluded location. Once your food mass is down enough to do so, move around every day (preferably from day 1 if you can carry all of your gear and food at once). Once the time is up, activate the PLB.

Only for the out-of-basement guys (1)

eliphas_levy (68486) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038088)

"Applicants must include at least 3 recent pictures and 2 minutes of video of themselves taken within the past year."

That alone disqualifies me :)

Navy solution (2, Interesting)

DoofusOfDeath (636671) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038118)

Sign up just before beginning a deployment on a nuclear missile sub.

There must be something in the rules... (1)

jridley (9305) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038176)

I mean really - 4 weeks? I'd pull a thousand bucks out of the bank, rent a car, drive a few hundred miles, take a bus or something to the trailhead and spend a nice month hiking the Appalacian Trail or something, paying cash for my food. Always wanted to do that anyway, and for $10,000 it'd be a nice vacation. Do the rules say you have to be transacting business, or in populated areas or anything?

Yes, there are rules. (1)

dazedNconfuzed (154242) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038316)

Maybe people should read them before commenting on how easily said rules can be beaten.

Oh, that's right, this is /., where posters* comment on the story they want to comment on, not the one they're actually replying to.

(* - mea culpa, I'm feeling extra snarky today.)

Re:There must be something in the rules... (4, Informative)

maxume (22995) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038390)

The application asks you to list 5 restrictions or activities that you will commit to doing. They will pick people who list interesting things. They will not people who list sleeping, eating and drinking.

Slashdotted (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31038210)

meh

How about (1)

SnarfQuest (469614) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038232)

What if you had friends all around the country who would post as you. For any times you actually need to interact on the internet, work through one of their machines to hide your true location. If you have a satellite link, and camp out in a forest somewhere, it should be quite hard to find you.

web server (4, Funny)

commodoresloat (172735) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038234)

"If you are the owner or webmaster for this web site please contact your web site hosting company's support department."

It looks like the webserver for this story entered the contest.

In Canada (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31038268)

We're already off the grid... I could probably just stay in my own house and not be found. Unfortunately we're not allowed to enter the contest.

Just 10K? (1)

Keyslapper (852034) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038338)

That wouldn't even cover the expenses incurred covering your tracks, nevermind having to get by after the fact until you can find a new job.

Didn't Whitey Bulger do this already? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31038418)

We should get the Wired readers to track him down.

Its a chase, not an escape (1)

gsgriffin (1195771) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038472)

Those talking about the hike into the mountains are missing the point of the chase.

If you want to do this and have fun, you need to be an international traveler that is posting your blogs just before you get on a train or plane or boat. They have to actually catch you. Go ahead and post and tweet. Just keep moving quickly so they don't know where you are for more than a few seconds.

Wouldn't be that hard (1)

HangingChad (677530) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038518)

Wired writer Evan Ratliff wrote a story about how people erase their identities and start over.

We're getting ready to sell our house and move, only we're not buying another house right away. We're going to investigate locations to build an off-grid concrete home. In getting set up to go mobile I realized how easy it would be to make a few changes and drop off society completely. Not only can you do it, but if you have the money you can do it in style and comfort.

My wife has a medical condition that would keep us from participating in something like this, but after months of preparation I can tell you it can be done. You don't realize how much is tied to having an address until you face a situation where you won't have one. The biggest logistical hurdle we've faced is getting an address to establish residency without having a permanent physical address.

Now becoming someone else and assuming an identity is a whole different gig. That's a lot harder, but disappearing for a couple months. Piece of cake. And if someone was after us, I could have them chasing rabbit trails for weeks. There's a reason 12 million undocumented people can get by here.

Easy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31038678)

I was a carnie for a year in my early 20's. Those guys are gone, cash everything, no real names just nicknames. Cash everything, no SS# used. It isnt that hard as many of them had warrants outstanding.

I wonder... (1)

Kral_Blbec (1201285) | more than 4 years ago | (#31038738)

If 10 grand would cover a vacation to some remote island in the pacific?
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