From hackers and phishers to overreaching big brothers and foreign actors, lots of people want your data. Enter the GoDark Faraday Bag.
Many of us might have read the book, 1984 which is a fictional work about the government taking complete control of…well, everything. Although anyone who believes such a thing could actually happen must be a total lunatic. Right? I mean, it’s not as if our social media and everything we do online is being monitored, stored, and sold… is it? Perhaps we might be a bit closer to 1984 than we think. Is it total fiction?
When my editor sent me a GoDark Faraday bag to review, I had mixed emotions. I’m not a tech geek, I’m a gun, knife, and tactics geek, so this project took me a bit out of my comfort zone. Still, the idea interested me because I don’t like the idea of being spied on.
The GoDark Faraday Bag
What does it do?
When the mobile phone is inside this bag (it’s more like a case), signals to and from the phone are cut off. The bag prevents hacking and GEO location tracking by cutting off the signals from GPS and Cell Towers. We’ll talk more about this later.
Some folks believe that turning one’s phone off will cut off the signals, but this is not the case. You have to actually remove the battery to kill the signal. More and more, however, devices do not have removable batteries, so they are always “on.” The Faraday case turns the devices off by shielding incoming and outgoing signals.
I’m not a tech nerd, so I have no idea what all of this really means, I’m simply regurgitating the information just in case you can actually decipher any of it (and if you can, you have my admiration!).
This case fully blocks all incoming/outgoing signals in frequencies between 600 MHz – 5 GHz.
- CDMA, GSM, PHS, DCS, 3G, 4G, LTE.
- WiFi (24. – 5GHz), Bluetooth (2.4 GHz) and GPS (1-2 GHz).
- Electromagnetic Frequencies (EMF)
Whew! My head is spinning just looking at all of that. I noticed that 5G is not listed (I believe the case was made prior to 5G existing). However, mine seems to stop it as well, so I think it’s good to go in that department. Upon checking the GoDark website, they do specify that the case blocks 5G signals.
How do you use it?
*Vehicle Security. If the user places his key fobs in this case, their signals cannot be intercepted. Why is that important? Because thieves can intercept those signals and enter and steal a user’s vehicle with the technology. Nowadays, cars have a central computer, which is locked with an electronic key. The key fobs to cars work using electro-magnetic signals that communicate with the vehicle. The Faraday bag prevents the intercepting devices that thieves use from interpreting that signal so they cannot figure out which radio waves to send to your car to steal it.
*Privacy. Many types of phones made now can be tracked even if they are turned off. Perhaps the user can envision instances in which he does not wish to be tracked or associated with a location, in which case, the case will block the signal. As well, many apps out there will ping the phone and the data is mined. Maybe you want to reduce the instances of this occurring. Putting it simply…sometimes, dammit, I just don’t feel like being watched!
What if there is an EMP?
Some people have mentioned that the case (and Faraday cases, in general) will protect against an EMP (Electro-Magnetic Pulse). And this may be so. However, if an EMP hits and it happens to be from a nuclear device, I think my phone or key fob being fried is going to be the least of my worries. Presumably, the entire electrical grid would be down in such an instance, so a wide geographic area would likely be Royally Screwed. I’m not sure what saving my phone would do for me under those circumstances.
One source of an EMP could come from solar storms/flares on the sun. In such an event, it might be worth protecting personal electronics because the results of the EMP may not be spread over a huge geographic area. Power would be restored at some point, so having a phone or other devices protected could be beneficial in that instance.
Here is a partial list of some items that we might want to consider storing in a Faraday bag/case:
- Smart Watches
- Mobile Cell Phones
- Car Key Remotes
- Credit Cards
- USB Drives or other removable drives
These are just a few items, and tech-savvy readers will undoubtedly have more comprehensive lists. This is just to get you started thinking about some possibilities.
I tested my Faraday case by placing my phone in it and using another phone to attempt to locate it using a tracking app. The signal was shut down. Calling and texting the phone produced the same results, the phone could not be reached.
To be honest, the biggest selling point for my personal use is the privacy factor because being able to go somewhere and not leave an electronic footprint is attractive. I rarely would want to do so, but I enjoy being able to should I decide to go that route.
The GoDark Faraday Bag Itself
The GoDark Faraday bag that I’m reviewing is dark grey in color with a bright orange bungee-type cord to secure the top flap. It is also water and puncture-resistant and has some padding inside, so it offers some protection for your devices. The outer shell is constructed of 600D poly with a PU face coat and a TPU backing. It has a two-year warranty.
The Maximum Device Size listed for this case is a width of 3.25 inches and a height of 6.75 inches. The outer dimensions are 8.25 inches x 4.5 inches. It’s not huge but will accept a fairly large phone. My phone has a protective case on it and still fits into the faraday case.
GoDark advises to never use any phone with protruding cables because this will compromise the user’s privacy.
It seems to be ruggedly made and sturdy, and I have confidence that this case will stand up to quite a bit of use. As mentioned, this is not a daily use item for me at this time. On the other hand, I really like having the option of making my phone signal “disappear” if I should choose to do so. In this day and age, if you express that, you might receive replies from people such as, “Why do you want to hide?” Which pretty much answers its own question. I might simply not want Big Brother staring over my shoulder.
A decade ago, anyone who said that the “fictional” book entitled 1984 would come to pass was looked upon as a lunatic, paranoid extremist who’d lost his mind. Nowadays…maybe not so much.
As of this writing, GoDark sells a two-pack of these bags for $89.95.