How to achieve mobile anonymity during Pandemic Police State

in #global2 months ago (edited)

Last week a new digital surveillance legislation was approved in Slovakia, giving access to location data of Slovak citizens without the court order.
Slovakia is a country where it is not possible to sell or buy anonymous SIM cards, and all Slovak SIM cards have to be registered with ID (national ID or passport).
A few days ago, I sent more than 30 Czech anonymous SIM cards to my Slovak friends helping them to protect their privacy. There is a significant need for these SIM cards (some Czech started even OpenBazaar e-shop)
Unfortunately, the Czech secret agency is trying to ban these anonymous SIM cards so that they will be likely prohibited soon.

Providing anonymous SIM cards in some countries (like Hungary) can be interpreted as a hinder of monitoring implementation, a crime with a prison sentence up to 3 years.

Henceforth, the Penal Code lays down that anyone who hinders the implementation of disease control isolation, observation, quarantine or monitoring ordered with a view to preventing the introduction or spread of a communicable disease coming under compulsory quarantine or imposed during an epidemic is punishable with a prison sentence extending to three years. If the same crime is committed in a group, imprisonment extends from one to five years, while if the same crime causes fatalities, the punishment is imprisonment for two to eight years.

Mobile anonymity is becoming a precious thing, like never before.

I made a comparison of many different eSIM global providers and found just three of them that accept crypto and can be used to obtain anonymous eSIM cards.

Use a secure anonymous phone and VPN/Tor

To use this eSIM card most securely, you should install it to the phone, which has never been associated with your identity (i.e., you never use it with your personal SIM cards). If you do not have such a phone, you can buy it, e.g., at https://Alza.cz in an anonymous way and pay by your favorite cryptocurrency. They have a lot of phones supporting eSIM technology.

Also, I recommend doing all shopping through your VPN or Tor browser. Be aware; all payments are made in crypto only.

You should be able to use this eSIM card in all eSIM compatible phones including these:

Smartphones
iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, iPhone XR, iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, iPhone 11 Pro Max
Google Pixel 3/3XL, Google Pixel 3A/3A XL, Google Pixel 4/4XL
Samsung Galaxy Fold LTE model
Samsung Galaxy S20, S20+, S20 Ultra (eSIM international models)
Samsung Z Flip
Motorola Razr 2020

Tablets with embedded eSIM
iPad Pro 11 and 12.9 -inch Wi-Fi + Cellular (3rd Gen)
iPad Air Wi-Fi + Cellular (3rd Gen)
iPad mini Wi-Fi + Cellular (5th Gen)
Gemini PDA

Windows 10 PC's
Lenovo Yoga 630, HP Spectre Folio

There is a benchmark website comparing multiple global eSIMs, but from all of them, only eSIM2Fly supports crypto (I will describe this eSIM provider later).

Surfroam eSIM

https://surfroam.com/products/surfroam-esim-global

From all described providers this one is the most expensive (in most EU countries 1 MB costs 0.01 EUR, which means 1 GB for 10 EUR). But it is the only one where you have no time limit for spending your data (in case of two other ones you can buy cheaper data packages, but just for two weeks).
Another disadvantage may be this eSIM card can be used for mobile data only, but no GSM/3G/4G calls. But in the times of end-to-end encrypted calls (Signal, Wire, Threema), I strongly do not recommend to use traditional mobile operator calls.

Global (114+ countries with 3G/4G coverage)
Global+ (124+ countries with 3G coverage) *USA higher rate
Ultra (62+ countries with 3G/4G coverage)

Most people will choose Global, but if you want e.g., to be available in Panama/Colombia and the EU at the same time, you should check Global+ (but it has 3G coverage only).

You need to buy an eSIM card for 20 EUR. For the payment, use Coinbase and choose your favorite crypto (Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Dai, Ethereum, Litecoin, USD Coin). It is also possible to pay it by SEPA transfer (in this case, you can use anonymous crypto SEPA gateways like https://cryptopay.cz/ or https://client.simplecoin.eu/). In this value of 20 EUR, you have 20 EUR credits, which mean, e.g., 2 GB of data in the EU.

When I ordered this SIM card, they wrote me back and asked me to provide my scan ID/passport (this is officially required in their FAQ). I refused to give this information and asked for my money back. They answered me this is not required for crypto payments (!!!) and sent me immediately the QR code for eSIM activation.
The activation was smooth, and the same in all cases. My activation for Google Pixel 4XL looks:

  1. Click to "Settings / Network & Internet / Mobile network" and click "Add More"
  2. Choose "Download a SIM instead" (Add a number using eSIM) and click "Next"
  3. In the menu "Confirm your network" click to "Use a different network."
  4. Scan QR code you receive by email from Surfroam.
  5. Enable Data Roaming for this eSIM card.
  6. Proceed to eSIM Profile Mobile data and set APN "globaldata".

And that is all.

You will get the IP address of Isle of Man (Cloud9 Communications Ltd).

OneSimCard

https://www.onesimcard.com/

OneSimCard offers eSIM cards for $9.95. You can use the voucher code "ESIM50" to get a 50% discount.
The activation of this card is a bit more complicated. OneSimCard will process your crypto transaction after 6 hours, and in the next business day, you receive the information that your eSIM QR codes are ready.
They provide cheap two weeks EU data package 5000MB for 29 USD or 10000 MB 57 USD, which is 5.3 EUR per GB (5000MB package) or 5.2 EUR per GB (10000 MB package). Unfortunately, you have only two weeks to spend the data package. But OneSimCard may be great if you want to have and use your local VoIP number (you can choose from multiple different local numbers in the different regions of many countries). They call it "Personal Extra Number or PEN" and, e.g., I can buy the PEN of small Slovak city "Prievidza" for $17.95 (3 months) or $32.49 (6 months) or $59.88 (one year). You can also easily set up Voice Mail or Call Forwarding.
OneSimCard provides Estonian number and Estonian IP addresses for mobile data.

If you want to test this service and do not wish to be anonymous, do not hesitate to use my referral code RRFK368442, and you get a special discount on your first order.

To pay for your OneSimCard, firstly, you have to register at the website (they will ask you for some name and personal details, but they do not do KYC/AML). Use, of course, VPN or Tor. Then you need to top up your internal credit with crypto. You can use Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, Litecoin, or Coinbase gateway. If you want to buy the EU data package 5000 MB, you have to top up 50 USD. This credit you can spend subsequently for OneSimCard services.
As I have already mentioned, the processing of crypto transactions may take up to 6 hours, and in one business day they will create your eSIM QR code. The activation is similar like for Surfroam:

  1. Click to "Settings / Network & Internet / Mobile network" and click "Add More"
  2. Choose "Download a SIM instead" (Add a number using eSIM) and click "Next"
  3. In the menu "Confirm your network" click to "Use a different network."
  4. In your OneSimCard web profile, the section "My SIM cards" you will find the proper QR code for eSIM. Just scan it.
  5. Enable Data Roaming for this eSIM card.
  6. If you want to use the data package, you have to activate it - it is also quite easy to do - in your profile, choose the date for the activation. Be aware this package will be valid from this date for another two weeks only.

eSIM2Fly

https://esim2fly.com/

eSIM2Fly seems to be one of the best eSIM cards in Asia that can be bought with crypto. 6 GB of data in Asia for eight days will cost you $19. They offer a global data 15-days package 6 GB with the EU included for $36. It is 5.48 EUR per GB, which is not bad, but it is time-limited, and per GB, it is a bit more expensive than OneSIMCard that is time-limited as well. That was the reason why I decided not to test this service because I do not see another added value for me. But it can be an interesting option for all people who are planning to visit Asia or want to have 6 GB global data package for $36.

Summary

A possibility to buy and use anonymous global eSIM cards immediately in all countries where they are prohibited (or will be prohibited soon) can significantly improve the mobile privacy of all citizens.
Use them and spread the word.