Never mind that invisibility cloak. The modern way to slink about undetected is through a “privacy spray” that snuffs out all traces of left-behind DNA.
Brooklyn-based educator Heather Dewey-Hagborg has created “Invisible,” a pair of clear atomizers to prevent you from being “tracked, analyzed or cloned.” Erase deletes 99.5 percent of DNA from fingernail, saliva or hair samples, while Replace muddies the remaining .5 percent.
“You wouldn’t leave your medical records on the subway for just anyone to read,” writes Ms. Dewey-Hagborg, a PhD candidate at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, New York, on her website, BioGenFutures, the company that sells the sprays. “You should be in control of how you share your information and with whom: be it your email, your phone calls, your SMS messages and certainly your genes.”
She should know. Last year, she extracted genetic information from strangers, using hair follicles and cigarette butts she found on sidewalks and in public bathrooms.
The website suggests various situations where the $90 anti-surveillance spritz, available online in June, might be of use.
• Acing that interview? Don’t let your genes undermine your confidence. Be invisible.
• Are you too big to fail? Don’t let DNA spill your secrets. Protect your image and be invisible.
• Spend the night somewhere you shouldn’t have? Erase your mistake and be invisible.
• Dinner with the prospective inlaws going smoothly? Don’t let them judge you based on your DNA, be invisible.
• Exercising your freedom of speech? Be invisible and never get tracked.
Have a serious case of paranoia? Be invisible.
Check out the product’s dystopian marketing video below.