Most everyone is familiar with 9-1-1, 4-1-1, and 6-1-1 numbers in America, but there are other equally valuable three-digit numbers worthy of remembrance or plugging into your contact list. And that includes the equivalent numbers in other countries, when you travel.
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I can’t think of anyone who has not used 9-1-1 to call for help in a law enforcement, fire, or medical emergency, or to report something in need of Police investigation or intervention. Almost everyone with a cell phone knows that 4-1-1 is directory information, and that 6-1-1 is commonly used to reach their carrier regarding issues with their cellular account or the phone, itself. But what about 2-1-1, 8-1-1, and other numbers in the series? Not so much. Even more problematic, is what happens when you are in another country. What numbers do you use, then? This post will answer that, and give you all the numbers for popular North American destinations.
While there is some international cooperation in assigning such numbers, there remain vast differences. The European Union, has its own set of numbers, and while the UK employs some of them, they also have their own set, devised before the EU had existed. Yet Australia, New Zealand, and Canada are slightly to vastly different from England, Canada almost identical to America. Asia and the Middle East is a hodge-podge, while South America is a bit of hodge-podge, but like Canada, also employs 9-1-1 for the main number. Some countries, like Mexico, have sort of ignored the issue (both the government, and citizens – see note), though they are at least using 9-1-1, as of late. Africa is just plain behind the times, you will need a different number everywhere you go, in most cases.
Fortunately, it’s not at all hard to find out what emergency numbers are available when abroad, and it can be done online easily before you travel, at WikipediA, where almost every country is cited. One can also search on ‘emergency phone numbers’ + (country name). Travel agents, airline and cruise ship firms, State Department offices and any Embassy (any nation), will generally have the answer. If already in the country, any citizen should be able to at least give you the key-most emergency number for fire/police/medical… if you both speak a common language.
You can see why programming them into your phone beforehand might be a good idea.When abroad, you should always program the local US Embassy or Consulate number into your phone, as well. And, btw, before you travel, check with your phone company about how to avoid huge phone bills while abroad. It is easy to run up bills into the thousands of dollars, if unaware. There are several things you can do, including purchasing a temporary sim card with a foreign carrier, or special temporary rate plans from your carrier. Just know that your cell carrier may not be interested in telling you about options they can’t make money on, if they do not have partnership arrangements in place, overseas. So your travel agent and the like may be a good second-opinion resource. Image: WikipediA.
The American system would seem to be far more robust than many other three-digit systems. The list shown here also includes Canadian numbers, which do not necessarily apply outside of Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, Nova Scotia, Ontario, and Saskatchewan:
America Canada Service
2-1-1 2-1-1 Community health and social services: suicide prevention, welfare programs, access to free services such as for food, housing, legal aid. Includes State, County, public/private entities. An operator will inquire as to need, and provide suggested local contacts.
3-1-1 3-1-1 Frequently available in larger cities, similar to 2-1-1, but Municipal.
4-1-1 4-1-1 Directory Information or ‘operator.’
5-1-1 5-1-1 Available in many areas: automated road condition reports, and a means to report accidents and road hazards not require 9-1-1 help.
6-1-1 6-1-1 Direct contact with the cellular carrier’s customer support.
7-1-1 7-1-1 Reserved, not in use.
8-1-1 In most locations, connects to a centralized information system for utility services, principally to locate underground lines. It is currently not used to report problems, but that may change in the future.
aaaaaa.aa8-1-1 Tied to the national health care system for urgent care requests.
9-1-1 9-1-1 Police, Fire, Medical emergency ONLY. Also good in Mexico*, Bermuda, and the Bahamas.
*Mexico is began implementing 9-1-1 in 2017, but may not be in service in less populated areas, and the person answering may not speak English and a transfer to someone who does may not be very fast. Previously, Mexico had separate 8 digit numbers for fire, police, and ambulance, and those numbers remain in place. The Military has its own phone number for crime-lord response, but Citizens tend to have no faith in any such services, there, because help seldom responds, or they do not trust Police/military. A group called Angeles Verdes (“Green Angels”) offers roadside aid and travel advices, tourist helps, answering in English: dial 0-7-8.
I almost forgot the handy ‘star codes’. It’s amazing how many people don’t know them… or have forgotten them (like me, almost). Star codes are also a three keystroke ‘number’ made up of two numerals preceded by an asterisk keystroke, found just left of ‘zero’ on the dial pad. They are also known as ‘Vertical Service Codes’ (VSC), Custom Local Area Calling Codes (CLASS, or LASS). They allow the you to directly interact with the digital telephone switching system, telling the hardware how to handle a given call situation differently. They can provide improved privacy/security or added feature-benefits in how you use your phone. Like the previous 9-1-1 numbers (save 6-1-1), they generally apply to both cell phones and land lines, though some function only on one or the other.
There are some 33 different codes in all, many in the form of paired codes, one to turn a feature ‘on’, and another for ‘off.’ Many are special functions tied to the type of phone account the subscriber has, or to optional features for an extra charge, and some would seem unlikely to be used very often. Some smart phones internally employ star codes such that the user is unaware, and does not need to know the code, such as when blocking a number. Because of these various variables, you should visit your service provider’s Web site to see which codes are specifically available to you under your service plan, and review your phone’s handbook to see how it might be handling such provisions.
However, there are several very important star codes which apply to everyone, which you should commit to memory, because all phones will work with them, and you don’t always end up using your own phone. Too many of them to detail, here, but there is a handy list at WikipediA. Scan the list and take a bit of time to mouse over the blue (hot link) text on their page, for a popup explanation, as the short description may not prove as useful in your evaluation. Click it if more text than will fit the box is apparent.
Take note of things like anonymous call rejection, call blocking, caller ID controls, and call trace. That last one is used when calls involve threats or are in some way malicious to you, your phone, or the phone company; it reports it to the phone company and can result in a notice being sent to Police and/or a joint investigation through the phone company. If particularly threatening or criminally harmful, you should also file a Police Report, and include the time/date along with the fact that you did use star 57… because Police will not otherwise contact you from just punching in the code, and just pushing the code alone won’t give Police the full story. I use it when I get calls from impossible phone numbers (scammers), and I let an appropriate agency know about it, if warranted.
A simple solution: establish a Web Walker, your own Internet emulation to totally bypass the existing system — and its snoopsBy H. Michael Sweeney, Copyright REMOVED. Permissions to duplicate granted provided it is reproduced in full with all links in tact, and referenced to the original article here at proparanoid.wordpress.com. Web Walker: How to Bypass Internet Surveillance or Defeat a Total Web Shut Down Updated Nov 26, 2012: Removed copyright and some text changes which do not impact conceptually, other than it is in preparation for creating an Open Source project to make a real operational Web Walker network available World wide. Additions introduced with RED TEXT. Web Walker: How to Bypass Internet Surveillance or Defeat a Total Web Shut Down This is a serious discussion of modest technical complexity which will take about fifteen minutes to read. If you bore easily with technospeak and are just curious, don’t bother yourself. Read this short, fun piece, instead, as it has more entertainment value. And then come back when you are more serious about preserving your freedoms in the face of the NWO.
The FBI, CIA, DIA, DHS, NSA, and dozens of other agencies including the Federal Reserve spy on internet users, and it is going to get much worse, SOON — perhaps to include martial law and suspension of the Constitution in the major next terrorism wave.
For example, CISPA and other legislation continues to threaten to remake the Internet into a completely transparent spying mechanism, or worse, it seems logical to expect government to shut these systems down altogether in a Martial Law or other declared emergency, or if there is a 99% Occupy on Steroids event, or worse. Since the attacks of Sept. 11, the government has created more than 260 new Agencies, the bulk of which are geared up for or in support of spying on you and me, what we do, say, and think. King George-style Sedition laws cannot be far behind, and have already been proposed by some Congressionals, though defeated if actually reaching the Floor. Currently, offering this advice is legal, but you can bet government snoops don’t want you to know about it.
Survival in the future, more than ever, will depend on access to key information, and when government actions shut down or seek to have unlimited access and control of communications… you don’t want to be just another person without a clue while serious risks to your safety unfold nearer and nearer to you; if they shut down the Web, you can bet TV, phones, and radio will also be curtailed except for ‘official’ propaganda. And when it comes back on line, it will be a totally new Internet in terms of the threat of surveillance. Read this review of what to expect under Martial Law and you will better understand the concern. I WILL NOT GO PEACFULLY INTO THAT DARK NIGHT, for it is born of pure evil, that yet more evil may be undertaken, and I am not willing to live within an evil construct with no way out. How say you?
These Hitlerite Police State tactics are being undertaken by a paranoid government in the name of combating terrorism, but the simple truth is, they do not fear terrorists, but the actual truth itself, and those who seek and share it. Terrorism is an invented enemy of political-control convenience that does less harm than unrighteous violence dished out by out-of-control Police. As clue this is true, very few of the hundreds of Federal Agencies and new weapon/surveillance systems/laws are aimed directly at Terrorists. No, the focus is ALL on citizens.
What better way to combat truth and free exchange of ideas and information than through the Internet, and by it, back doors into our computers, phones, and game systems by that same digital interface? You can no longer depend on the Military-Industrial-Intelligence-Media Complex to maintain such systems, provide you with protections of your privacy, or even uninterrupted access. Its time to become your own Island of communications safety. Become a Web Walker ‘Node’ (WW node). Not just because of privacy concerns, but also in case the government moves to shut down or replace the Web with a snoop friendly version… or even a natural disaster which disables whole portions of the current WWW.
There’s nothing particularly novel about the idea (but by all means, feel free to credit me with accolades). It is not patentable, but even if it were, I would freely put it in the public domain. Also feel free to come up with better solutions; I claim no superior skills or knowledge which cannot be surpassed by the likes of an Anonymous hacker or a software or hardware engineer, or every day super geek. It is merely a nuts and bolts solution to insuring privacy and continuity in the face of an overbearing Big Brother mentality.
To effect solution which protects privacy, truth, and unbroken access requires three things. Some hardware you probably do not already have, but may easily obtain; some like-minded people willing to work with you within a defined geographical boundary; and a willingness to take a little more trouble with your communications than you may be currently used to dealing with, though much of that can be addressed by those who know how to create automated scripting. Web Walker: How to Bypass Internet Surveillance or Defeat a Total Web Shut Down
Web Walker Equipment:
Most of us employ a router in our home to service more than one computer, game system, or a laptop that roams throughout the house and perhaps even the yard, etc. A typical router can service four or five such devices to a distance of a couple of hundred feet. When the signal goes through walls and furnishings, the maximum distance drops notably, but some of us may have purchased booster antenna systems to compensate the signal loss. What we need to do is think bigger, and more powerful, and to establish cooperative communications ‘nodes’ to extend range beyond our individual capabilities.
As it happens, Apple Computer has our back; visit the Apple Store for more information and technical description. Their Airport Extreme router is reasonably priced (can be purchased refurbished from Apple for as little as $130, and new for about $120 more — I’ve bought used ones for as low as $50). Take care not to confuse with the Airport Express, a lesser unit.
The Extreme does not care if you are using a Macintosh or a PC, a game system, a smart phone, or anything else you might want to hook up to it, including Apple TV, a shared printer, or a hard drive for automated backup for all connected users. Unlike most systems which operate in just one frequency (2.4 Ghz), it also uses 5 GHz, where there is less signal clutter in the radio environment. That improves both range and prevents data errors that slow things down.
But what makes it especially useful is its power and capacity, and it offers a built-in range extending feature. As it sits, it can handle up to five times the data throughput of most routers, and does so for twice the distance of the best of them (802.11a/b/g standards), and is less subject to interference from other RF sources. As an example of range, I’ve enjoyed a useful signal at nearly 500 feet away, in my car, with several homes and lots of trees and power poles between us. Best of all for our purposes, it can accommodate up to 50 users simultaneously.
And, like Macintosh computers, it has superlative security features to prevent unauthorized access, which will be critical. It is indeed extendable with the ability to add up to four ‘bridges’ (more routers) in daisy-chain fashion (or a radial layout) to essentially quadruple what is already an impressive operating envelope, or to resolve difficult signal penetration issues within a building. Bridges become range extension nodes in your WW network; a Bridge Node (B node) to allow roughly 50 more users. Lesser Apple routers also could be used, or perhaps competing units, but with reduced performance/capacity. Here is a YouTube video on setting up wireless bridging.
Web Walker: How to Bypass Internet Surveillance or Defeat a Total WebBooster antenna systems
When you couple any node to a booster antenna, you can enjoy phenomenal range. Apple has designed these units with an internal, concealed omnidirectional (all directions) antenna and provides software that controls the gain and other aspects which can improve nominal performance. Some Extremes feature a jack for adding an Apple made booster antenna, but it is also possible to modify any model using instructions found here, and a $20 adapting cable that works with any standard booster system. By itself, the unit has a 20 db rating, though apparently offering better performance than competitor units with similar ratings. Were you to double or triple that with a booster, you theoretically double or triple the distance. Only the surrounding or intervening environment dictates resulting performance (e.g., trees, structures, hills).
Boosters come in two flavors: omnidirectional to boost coverage area around you in all directions, and directional, to extend range through an arc of about 15-30 degrees in a given direction. I am told you can actually use both omnidirectional and directional boosters simultaneously with a simple signal splitter. They are available for both indoor and outdoor placement (outdoor increases reach), but an outdoor unit can be concealed inside and aimed through a window or attic vent, which is highly suggested to avoid visual detection by Men in Black.
Because networks can be ‘named’ and selected by name for use, you can have any number of WW nodes, each with or without bridge nodes, each with or without their own booster for a given directional or omnidirectional need. Any one of these can be simultaneously connected to an existing ISP for ‘normal’ use, or can be operated as de facto Web Walker ‘ISP’ in a closed network, and easily be reconfigured (plug and play, or in this case, plug and share) at will.
Directional systems usually rely upon what is called a Yagi antenna design, which may or may not be enclosed in a can or tube, or small triangular housing. Where the signals going into or coming from a Yagi are additionally passed through an amplifier, phenomenal range can be achieved, though if building your own ‘black box’ solution, you must be aware of FCC guidelines and limitations on signal strength. But by way of example, an amplified Yagi system can be so powerful and precise that it is best used on a tripod with a rifle scope to center it on target destinations miles away. That is how the WW can be made to reach users well into the countryside, where line-of-sight access is available. By such a method, it would even be possible to link nearby communities in daisy-chain fashion.
Booster systems start in the 9 db range but you can find them up to 49 db, which can mean up to 1,500 feet between bridges, give or take. That’s well over a mile in total distance if employing four bridges, and about 3 million square feet of user coverage. Claims of distances for Yagi systems of up to 4,800 feet are out there, but don’t get sucked in by anyone who sells a product specifying distance — it’s a disreputable tactic that usually involves a sham. Web Walker: How to Bypass Internet Surveillance or Defeat a Total Web Shut Down
That’s the whole point, right? Such a system is not intended to replace the Internet for everyone who is currently subscribed to an ISP. That would cause bandwidth issues beyond the current state of the art’s ability to inexpensively cope. It is to allow people of common need and support to stay in truly confidential touch and securely share critical information which would otherwise be deprived of them, or obtained from them surreptitiously without permission. So you pick and choose friends, family, coworkers, compatriots, and patriots whom you think best meet your needs. That does not mean you cannot also have others join the network to enhance functionality. Here’s how you reach them…
First, map out the locations of people who should be logical participants and who are interested in joining your WW. Some may already be ‘in range.’ For those further away, consider directional antenna or bridge solutions, or a combination. For bridges used to fill in the distance gaps with useful signals, seek out the most logical locations for placement of bridges, and see if you know someone there, or could make friends with someone in the area. Explain your goals and see where the dialog goes. Hopefully you would find them kindred Constitutionalists or Activists at heart, or otherwise willing to house your bridge unit and keep it powered up in exchange for benefits, and perhaps join your WW node or even contribute toward costs.
But bridges merely render you and up to 50 other persons within range into a relatively small private local-area WW network, and may still fall short of enough range to reach intended persons at greater distance. But there is even more we can do. Because each individual node operator/user can have multiple named routers and select which is in use, any user can establish their own WW node and serve as a relay station from one such node to another… and if needed, to another, and another, ad nauseum.
By this means, a whole city can be encompassed. Multiple routes or paths from point A to D via B and C are also advised so that system integrity is maintained if a node is lost. There are additional security-related route redundancy considerations discussed shortly.
I’d suggest an ideal WW operator’s site would look like this: three Web Walkers with directional boosters just for distance in three differing directions, and one omnidirectional for those around you, perhaps a system you make available to all neighbors who apply, over time (a move considered a security risk, at best). I think of it as being triads of node triads in a pattern which blossoms outward like some kind of Dandelion seed puff covering the whole of its core being. But there are many environmental reasons an actual geometric pattern is not likely to result.
And at the end of those routes, that is where you want your most loyal of kindred spirits, because they should do the same, and likewise at the end of their otherwise completely separate routes. Keep in mind, too, that a bridge operator can likewise add additional units and establish their own WW node while remaining a bridge element in yours. It is completely free form to need for each individual node operator/user. Web Walker: How to Bypass Internet Surveillance or Defeat a Total Web Shut Down
Changes in how you communicate:
Each WW node operator/user would be key to facilitating communications beyond their own node’s connected users (other nodes). Everyone on their own node (also true of B nodes), which functions with the ease of a local network, would become a peer-to-peer communicant party with others on that node; it is a local Intranet. They would be able to easily send information and files to anyone else in that same network, or even make portions of their computer files directly available to select or even all other communicants, with or without password requirements. That is, in fact, how they could mount a personal Web site for access by others, essentially serving as their own Web host system. Nothing new in that.
Martial law, Police State, revolution, natural disaster, Internet shut down, CISP, PIPA
Add some Intranet email software clients or peer-to-peer clients and you get some ease of communications which would seem rather normalized to the way one uses the Web, currently. But as for Web Walker-based user Web sites, the actual Internet would be out of bounds, or should be, to prevent assault from spyware or worms designed to discover and track Web Walker activity.
One simple solution is to buy a used Macintosh, which is generally impervious to externalized attacks of this sort, and which would be safer for use on any compromised Internet government might control. Go ahead and mount Windows and your PC software on it so it behaves like a PC if that’s what you are more comfortable with. In a way, a Mac is often more ‘PC compatible’ than many PCs, anyway. Protect Web Walker best by complete dissociation from the WWW by use of a dedicated router for the actual Internet. You can easily bounce back and forth between WW and WWW sources with a few mouse clicks, and copy and past may prove useful.
But where an elaborate WW node (e.g., multiple routers in multiple directions) is employed, the potential exists to relay information (email or Web site data) between any two adjacent WW locations. And there is no end of relays possible. All that is required is a localized addressing scheme, which is easy to come by because each server has a name, and each user an intranet IP address unique to the router. So whomever is the central-most party of a Triad (the designer, if you will), would determine the name of the WW router for addressing purposes, and track THAT node’s user IPs. So to send data or request data to/ from an outside Web Walker, would only require that you knew the address; IPnumber@router name. Thus whenever a new router (node) is to be added to the greater WW network, a proposed router name should be submitted to the network to allow people to indicate if it was perhaps already in use at their end.
As in the real Internet, you should never share addresses, as that could compromise user privacy expectations. That means no one knows exactly where on the greater WW network a given user is located. So to send a request for a ‘Web page’ on the WW network, or an email, one uses email (I suggest using PGP – Pretty Good Privacy encryption because it employs a sender/recipient decryption key scheme so that only the recipient can access) to send to the WW node operator. When the operator gets it, he compares the address to those listed on his own node(s), and sends it on if the recipient is one of his ‘flock.’ This could be automated with minimal software.
Otherwise, he switches his computer over to each of the other WW nodes which link to other, distant WW nodes, and forwards the file (also subject to automation). In this way the message goes everywhere until it finds the right operator, and is forwarded to the specific recipient. If a Web page request, the recipient sends an email back containing the Web markup language code for the file, along with all embedded images, videos, etc. This may require an email client which has no file size limitation, such as a virtual private network email client, which is a good choice, anyway, for management of email by a node operator.
The flaw in this plan is that the designer would need to spend a considerable amount of time looking at data flows and switching routers and forwarding as needed from one node to another. That could prove a severe issue in a major City environment well connected to large numbers of individuals. Therefore, two additional bits of advice are offered. Web Walker: How to Bypass Internet Surveillance or Defeat a Total Web Shut Down
1) to some degree, restrict membership to those persons of value to the localized network. That means people who truly are kindred spirits, or who have useful resources or skills, such as weapons, food, or whatever is appropriate for assuring mutual survival. This is not our Children’s Internet;
2) Users should limit communications to serious needs, only. You don’t go ‘surfing,’ and you don’t send spam, or watch movies, porn, play games, etc.
3) Employ scripting, utility software, or write custom software to handle as much of the work load as possible. Macintosh has system-level scripting built in, as do many kinds of Web utilities, and Linux/Unix systems are also quite flexible in this respect.Web Walker: How to Bypass Internet Surveillance or Defeat a Total Web Shut Down
Men in Black
Naturally, the government will not like this idea very much. Who knows? They may label me a terrorist any moment for having published this idea. Welcome to do so if they want a bit of bad publicity. I’m sure I’m already on their list, anyway. But their concern means that you would likely want to hide your units and shield your rooms to prevent so many strong signals from screaming, ‘Here I am!’ Better they should see only one signal at a time, if possible, and not easily ascertain its point of origin. Ask me about Primus Pick Proof Locks for your home, if truly worried about Men in Black snoops.
Again, it would be wise to establish multiple routes between critical or important users or resources in case one route is compromised or suffers technical failure. Any two adjacent WW Node operators would know each other and would become aware of any such loss of service (again, to play safe, shut down any signal to it) and investigate carefully before deciding what to do about it (e.g., replace the route, help repair, etc.)
Unless they specifically passed a law or edict against, even if discovered, you should not likely be in too great a danger except from confiscation of equipment and questioning. Likely, the files on your computer would be a greater risk of getting you into trouble if they felt like pressing a given matter. Spare equipment, secret locations, and escape tunnels may be called for in the worst of times.
And should revolution come, I have heard it said regarding one such revolution, “It was the best of times, and the worst of times…” But in such a case, being able to communicate can make a bad time the best possible.
Update: Due to popular response and interest, I’m going to attempt to launch an Open Source Project to make Web Walker real. The first order of business will be to come up with a new name: at the time of first posting just a few months back, there was only one Web Walker out there, a Web authoring service, and one product (a one word trade name). Now, however, there are nearly a half dozen Web Walkers of all manner since then, for some reason. Why, if I was paranoid, I’d think it on purpose~ 🙂 Ideas anyone?
Click the FOLLOW button at very page top to learn more about the Open Source Project, or better yet, especially if wanting to learn about the may options or ways in which you can participate, use the CONTACT link at page top to express your interest. There will be more posts on the Project, to include many enhancements such as an inherent mechanism to simulate social networking and search engines free of advertising, spying mechanisms, and useless distracting fluff. THANK YOU for taking the time to learn about Web Walker!
- Would you give the government remote control over your router? (arstechnica.com)
- Ron, Rand Paul: Get Government Away From Internet (personalliberty.com)