Former CIA Officer Jason Hanson Reveals...

Spy Secrets That Can

Save Your Life

Get Out Alive

Mailbag Monday

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When I attend work meetings we are required to turn our cell phones off. Is there any kind of device that I can carry into the meeting that will block calls or cell phone signals?

-From Nick H.

Answer: There are devices for sale online that can block cell phone signals, however, I would never buy or use one (outside of working for the government). The next thing you know the FBI could be knocking at your door.

Blocking cell phone signals is a violation of federal law and I assure you that if you get caught using these types of devices it will be more of a headache than it’s worth.

One of the main reasons this is illegal to do is because if someone needed to call 911 and you blocked the signal, it could have deadly consequences.


I keep getting scammy phone calls – sometimes up to 10 a day! I don’t know how many times I can get a call telling me that my car warranty is about to expire. How do I make it stop?

-From Shelly T.

Answer: I would contact your cell phone or landline service provider and ask them if they have any way to block scam phone calls. Most cell phone carriers can provide some type of blocker but they may charge you a small fee to have this service.

Also, if the calls are coming from the same number you could block that number from your phone. You shouldn’t have to change your number if you call your service provider and have them walk you through how to block calls. Of course, you can also put yourself on the Do Not Call List.


In your opinion which is the safest brand or model of laptop computer from a security standpoint?

-From Haley Y.

Answer: Many people think that Apple computers are more secure than a PC. The truth is, the Apple operating system is harder to exploit than Microsoft, but it is not completely resistant to viruses.

So, whether you go with a Mac or PC, you need to take personalized security steps when setting up your computer. For instance, you should use a reputable anti-virus software and always use a virtual private network (VPN) on your computer.

Lastly, regularly check for updates on any computer you buy to make sure that the latest security software is installed no matter if it is a Mac or PC.


What are your thoughts on the pros and cons of owning a .22 vs. 9mm handgun for home defense?

-From Randy S.

Answer: When it comes to home defense, I recommend a 9mm over a .22 for the simple fact that the 9mm has more stopping power. Even though a .22 can cause damage and kill someone, the 9mm is more powerful.

For example, a 9mm round can penetrate 12 inches. A .22 round won’t penetrate that far and when you are trying to stop an attacker, you want to stop the threat, which is usually done by damaging a vital part of the body.

So, I would definitely stick with a 9mm round for home defense. (I use Speer Gold Dot as my 9mm home defense ammo.)


Is there a specific product you recommend for sharpening your knives?

-From Mike R.

Answer: If you own expensive knives, I recommend doing an Internet search for local knife makers. They’re all over the U.S. and will be able to take care of expensive knives the way they should be treated. (Do not go to some large retail store to get this done.)

In addition, I would check out the Lansky brand of knife sharpeners. These are inexpensive sharpeners that are great to throw in a bug out bag to use on less costly knives.


I’ve added multiple power banks to my survival gear. Do power banks lose power if they aren’t used frequently? How long will the bank still have the remaining power?

-From Victor M.

Answer: A quality power bank, such as one made by the company Mophie, can hold a charge for up to 6 months. The thing is, most power banks will slowly lose charge over time depending on the temperature the power bank is stored at.

In addition, lithium-ion, and lithium-polymer batteries used in power banks eventually lose their capacity over time (typically between 200 up to 1000 cycles depending on the battery cell quality.)

I would check your power banks at least every 6 months and recharge them.

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