- No joke. I don't have the time to copyvio it right now, but sorting the stub should at least bring it to people's attention. I'll mark it as a major edit, too, so that it's not filtered by people hiding the minor edits. --Jemiller226 06:20, 3 May 2005 (UTC)
Doesn't it occasionally happen that an otherwise uninvolved third party stumbles upon the dead drop? Take the case of a library book; someone may check it out, request it sent to another branch, or open the book to the particular page. Or, if a sufficiently old and unpopular book is used, it may be discarded and given to someone. What is the term for this sort of thing, and what are the typical consequences to the finder? NeonMerlin 02:26, 27 July 2006 (UTC)
Overall focus of article
Might it be more useful to have a general discussion of clandestine communications, presumably non-electronic in this context? My experience is that a dead drop, for example, is not considered a cut-out in espionage tradecraft. A cut-out is a person, not a place, that adds security to a clandestine communication, by using an active technique such as a brush-pass to receive information from one person whose name is not known, to transfer the information either to another person, or to place it in a dead drop. Cut-outs interact, human-to-human, at least once. A dead drop may be filled by one person and emptied by another, with no direct human interaction.
In like manner, plausible deniability is a different concept than secure message transmission. If I can transfer a message securely, the fact of a transfer cannot be traced back to me in reality. If a message transfer is plausibly deniable, the matter is covert but not clandestine; the fact that a message exists is not being disputed. Howard C. Berkowitz (talk) 07:55, 17 November 2007 (UTC)
9/11 al-Qaeda dead drops
- Two or more people have the login and password to any "webmail" e-mail account, distributed by any of the usual ways other secure information such as one time pad cryptography keys can be. They also are assigned time frames to login and leave and retrieve messages as drafts. It's a way to send e-mail and file attachments without having them actually sent through any e-mail servers where they can be traced. The only traceable activity (assuming the mail service cannot access stored messages etc without the password) is the IP addresses used when logging in. Using open wireless hotspots accessible from locations where the user doesn't have to sign a log (so don't use public libraries) and won't be on security cameras is the best way to remain anonymous with this method. People up to no good and people attempting to catch them already know this method. I'd bet it's used by many people committing adultery. Bizzybody (talk) 01:22, 9 June 2015 (UTC)
Questions about dead drops
First of all, couldn't one party survey the dead drop site in hiding and determine the identity of the other? This gave me another question: What's the point of not meeting the other person in the first place?--220.127.116.11 (talk) 05:08, 15 April 2009 (UTC)
- For a start, observing the dead drop should be a major violation of trust, triggering (potential fatal) reactions. Second, it should be clear that the dead drop has to be hidden in a way that anonymity is improved: multiple angles of access, unobservability of the direct transaction, crowded and public space...
- The point of not meeting in the espionage-world clearly is to not be able to reveal the identity of your contacts. If it can be safely assumed that the agents have no clue whom they are talking about, the enemy probably has less incentive to torture the names out of them. In that way, anonymity is a protective measure for the agent. But as it comes with this topic not much is known to well in public. --Take your time (talk) 10:47, 26 January 2011 (UTC)
Dead Drops: The New Peer-to-Peer File-Sharing Network http://www.aolnews.com/surge-desk/article/dead-drops-a-new-peer-to-peer-file-sharing-network/19698176 --J. D. Redding 11:49, 2 November 2010 (UTC) http://deaddrops.com/ Does not really fit with this espionage topic, though clearly inspired by it. 'Dead Drops' redirects to the singular, maybe the plural can become a description of this new idea, or else it could be treated as an alternative form of geocaching. --Sandvika 13:28, 10 November 2010 (UTC) The users of the technique "dead drop" should be irrelevant for the description of the technique. If one application of the technique is public, anonymous file-sharing, instead of anonymous personal communication, it is valid to at least start a "other uses" section. This would also help to clarify the difference between the concept and its applications. Using the plural as a distinction is wrong in my opinion, because the topic is not complicated enough to be featured on multiple pages. The terminology peer-to-peer might be misleading too. Those are deaddrops, not more or less public than others (knowledge of the spot suffices to be granted access) --Take your time (talk) 11:53, 26 January 2011 (UTC)