Reverse Text – esreveR txeT

Internet research just got a whole lot more complicated.

While doing some digging, I noticed that some web sites post certain articles in reverse text. Sure there are lots of articles in languages which read from right to left, but I’m not talking about those. I’m talking about articles from english-language sites which post sensitive information backwards so that they can say that the information is public while leaving it well masked.

An example of reverse text can be seen here (scroll down to the charts.)

And another can be seen here. [Update: This page from Australia has been un-reversed. Must be summer.]

But here’s another example.

I have seen this sort of behaviour on sites ranging in topics from educational to governmental to military to journalistic to economic. Most are economic. There are other ways to disguise plain text, as well. The site ‘textmechanic’ has several options. Try it out. There are many sites which allow an encryption of text strings, also.

Here is a Chinese(?) site which advertises knock-off Louis Vuitton pumps, but then gives an account of an exchange between Obama and Romney in reverse text. Is this how the underground media operates?

Many of these reverse hits seem to refer to .pdf documents. When links to them are clicked, browsers and .pdf readers sometimes display the information properly (with a warning that it isn’t being displayed in its original form;) this simply means that the information is accessible, just not searchable. Aah, the magic of loopholes.

The deep web is one thing, hidden in plain site is quite another. Look for yourselves, it really does open up a whole new world of research possibilities.