Description: Big Brother is watching. Yes, that classic Orwellian-inspired line has probably been uttered more than a few times – often followed with a smirk or laughter. But is the government watching you? Conspiracy theorists and your neighbor who wears that tinfoil hat and keeps the drapes tightly shut would have you believe this is the case. In the post-9/11 world it is easy to suspect they are right considering all the media attention about government spying, the NSA and the story surrounding whistle-blower Edward Snowden. Governments, like the United States’, have invested billions into intelligence gathering techniques. While the ability to collect personal information is said to be targeted at potential terror threats, there is more than a small suspicion that ‘regular’ citizens get snooped on more than a few times. How is this possible? When you think of it, the ability of the government to spy on individuals isn’t that surprising. Our modern lifestyle, reliance on convenience and willingness to allow various intelligence gathering practices all provide more than enough opportunity for the government to check in on us. Whether you walk down a busy city sidewalk, use public transit, ‘google’ something on your smartphone or get your passport renewed, there are numerous opportunities for personal information to be gathered by big brother. As you’ll see, some methods of spying are pretty well known but there are a few that may surprise you.