Don’t believe everything you see in movies. Actions, scenes, dialogue, and other elements are exaggerated for dramatic impact. However, some elements are true to real life to bring realism to the theatrics. Burner Phones are depicted correctly in shows like The Wire, but have been misrepresented in movies like The Bourne Supremacy. The misrepresentation is not how the phones are used, but the power that they bestow on the user. Absolute anonymity by simply using a phone is not achievable to the extent shown in these productions. Proper Burner Phone use necessitates trained conversation methods and avoiding any mention of personal information.
Can I really become Jason Bourne with a Burner Phone?
No, you can not really become Jason Bourne with a Burner Phone because Jason Bourne is not real. Burner Phones do allow a secure, anonymous channel to communicate, but what you do with that channel is up to you. Using a secure, anonymous communication channel to talk about your favorite hobbies is not as nefarious as how the movies depict Burner Phones. The tool is not to blame for what the person does with it. This sentiment is shared with Burner Phones because simply using a Burner Phone will not make you a fugitive criminal spy.
How anonymous does a Burner Phone make you?
A Burner Phone is a useful tool for seeking anonymous communication, but the tool is only as useful as the person who knows how to use it. This means that someone who is not well versed in the art of anonymity should not assume a Burner Phone will magically make their conversations private and anonymous. There are ways to track down the user of a Burner Phone, and companies like Nonpub.com work with Investigators who can successfully track Burner Phone users. Do not assume a Burner Phone guarantees 100% anonymity.
Do Burner Phones give me special powers?
No. Burner Phones do not give you special powers, they do not shield you from authorities, and they are not some magical tool used by criminals and terrorists to carry out movie style plots worldwide. They are, however, a useful tool for having secure, anonymous conversations. They are also unknowingly used by millions around the world due to sheer convenience.
Burner Phones are no more likely to turn you into an action hero than a gun. The myth is perpetuated by movies and television shows. Burner Phones are just tools and are only as good as the person using them. If someone is untrained and unknowledgeable using a Burner Phone, then they are no closer to being Jason Bourne than someone picking up a gun and becoming James Bond.