Prepper Book Festival 10: Spy Secrets That Can Save Your Life

Gaye Levy Gaye Levy  |  Updated: November 24, 2020
Prepper Book Festival 10: Spy Secrets That Can Save Your Life

Recent world events dictate that we remain on high alert, whether attending a concert, traveling using public transportation, shopping at the mall, or even walking around our own neighborhoods.  If you are like me, you may already be thinking that you know enough about situational awareness to know when something bad is about to happen and, as I have suggested, escape or take cover.

But that is only the tip of the iceberg.  To really get a grasp on the skills you need to stay ahead of the bad guys, you are going to need expert safety, survival, escape and evasion tactics.  With that introduction, I am pleased to present the next book in Prepper Book Festival 10: The Best New Books to Help You Prepare.

Spy Secrets That can Save Your Life | Backdoor Survival

The book is Spy Secrets That Can Save Your Life and oh my gosh, talk about 233 pages of information we need to know now!  This is information for the common Jill or Joe, written in a manner that is understandable and actionable.  For example, do you know how to think like a criminal, really?  Have you ever cased your own neighborhood or your own home?  Do you even know what to look for?

That is just the tip of the iceberg.  There are chapters that cover putting together a spy and escape evasion kit (not so different than a survival kit), how to travel safely, and even how to avoid or mitigate a car jacking.  This is good stuff.

In usual Book Festival fashion, today I share an interview with Jason Hanson, the author of Spy Secrets That Can Save Your Life.  In addition, I have a three copies of his book up for grabs in a giveaway and for sure you are going to want to enter this one.

Enjoy the interview then be sure to check in below to learn about the giveaway.

An Interview with Jason Hanson, Author of Spy Secrets That Can Save Your Life

Tell me about your book. What is it about?

The book teaches everyday people — from soccer moms to CEOs — how to help keep themselves and their families safe. It details simple ways people can be more aware of their surroundings and the dangers that they may have to confront, so they’ll be better prepared to deal with unforeseen dangers in our world.

Some of the fun and useful safety tips in the book include:

· How to hotwire a car even if you have zero mechanical knowledge.

· How to escape zip ties, duct tape, rope, and even handcuffs in 30 seconds or less… without having to use a knife or sharp object.

· How to disappear without a trace.

· How to create an Escape and Evasion Kit and which critical items to include in it.

· Lock-picking secrets that will allow you to quickly defeat doors and padlocks.

· How to use social engineering to get almost anything you want. (These are the secrets used by top intelligence agencies around the world.)

· The #1 way to create an improvised weapon if you don’t have any other way to protect yourself during an emergency survival situation.

· How to avoid being the victim of a deadly home invasion.

What type of research did you have to do while writing your book?

I really didn’t have to do much research since this how I was trained when I was with the CIA for seven years (2003-2010), and this is what I do for a living. I was trained in many different skills including evasive driving, hand-to-hand combat, firearms, and more, including some things that I cannot share.

How long did it take to write?

Since I’m busy running my Spy Escape and Evasion business, it took me about six months—longer than if I’d been able to focus on writing full-time. Additionally, I continued doing speaking engagements and security consulting, as well as teaching everyday citizens at my Spy Class and at my Spy Ranch in Cedar City, UT.

Every book, fiction and non-fiction, includes a message. What message do you hope my readers will take with them after reading your book?

Mainly that anyone can use the Spy Secrets I share to stay safer on a daily basis.

We live in a world that is always changing, and we need to be prepared when faced with a dangerous situation. I hope that I never have to use my skills to defend my family, but I’m comforted knowing that I have the knowledge and training to hopefully stay safe. The goal of the book is to impart those skills to readers, too.

Can you tell us a little bit more about yourself?

I was born and raised in the Washington, DC area. My first job out of college was with a local police department. After starting with the police department I was offered a job with the CIA and the Secret Service. I thought the CIA would be more fun and interesting, so I accepted the job. I worked for the CIA from 2003-2010. I had the entrepreneurial bug, and that was when I began teaching everyday civilians the secrets that could one day save their lives.

My wife and I recently moved our family to Cedar City, Utah. This is where we have the Spy Ranch, which is a 320-acre facility where I teach classes including Escape & Evasion Driving, Advanced Pistol Course, Defensive Riflecraft and many other courses that I believe every person can learn from.

In my spare time I enjoy spending time with my family, hiking, camping, and shooting.

As an author in the survival, prepping and/or homesteading niche, what are you personally preparing for?

I believe we should be prepared for everything: power outages, tornadoes, wildfires, hurricanes, and the collapse of the dollar. Our society is unpredictable, and when people are in desperate situations they do desperate things.

We need to be prepared for all of these things, and it’s important to be prepared to shelter at home or leave in a moment’s notice–because you may not have a choice.

What would be your first prep-step if you were just getting started?

The most important thing I recommend is to do your research. Read books and find people in your area who have done this. Also, build up your three-day food and water supply with other survival items, which I call an Escape Bag.

These are important steps that you can start now and slowly build up while maintaining a budget. It’s possible to build food storage on as little as $5 a week.

What book or movie, fiction or non-fiction, do you think gives the best portrayal of what could happen?

Well, anything could happen, which is why I think it’s so important to be prepared. There was a TV show called Revolution that gives a good possible scenario.

Do you have plans for another book?

Yes, there are lots more Spy Secrets I have to share. I also write a weekly blog post where I share many ideas that everyday citizens can use to keep themselves safe. It can be found at

Is there anything else you would like to share with my readers?

My book has lots of valuable information that will keep people safe. It’s important to always do research and learn as much as you can so you are prepared when faced with a dangerous situation.

Everyone should act today rather than put off preparing.


The Giveaway

Jason and his publisher have reserved three copies of Spy Secrets for this Book Festival Giveaway.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

To enter the giveaway, you need to utilize the Rafflecopter form below.  Select one or more of the options after signing in using your email account or Facebook, the choice is yours.  The best way to start is by clicking on “Free Entry for Everyone”.  After that, each option you select represents an additional entry.  There are a number of different options so pick and choose or select them all.

The deadline is 6:00 PM Pacific Tuesday with the winner notified by email and announced on the Rafflecopter in the article.  Please note that the winner must claim their book within 48 hours or an alternate will be selected.

The Final Word

Some of you may have seen Jason on Shark Tank where he shared a tip for releasing your hands after they have been bound up with duct tape.  That technique is in the book along with a whole lot more including how to escape from zip ties, rope, and handcuffs.

That being said, if I had to pick a single chapter as my favorite, it would be the chapter on “How to Run Counter Surveillance Like a Pro”.  I leave it to you to figure out who might be spying on me and why.

This is another fantastic Book Festival book and another must-have for your survival library. Please do enter the giveaway to win a copy for free . . . and good luck!

Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!

If you enjoyed this article, consider voting for Backdoor Survival daily at Top Prepper Websites!

In addition, SUBSCRIBE to email updates  and receive a free, downloadable copy of my e-book The Emergency Food Buyer’s Guide.


Spotlight:  Spy Secrets That Can Save Your Life: A Former CIA Officer Reveals Safety and Survival Techniques to Keep You and Your Family Protected

When Jason Hanson joined the CIA in 2003, he never imagined that the same tactics he used as a CIA officer for counter intelligence, surveillance, and protecting agency personnel would prove to be essential in every day civilian life.

In addition to escaping handcuffs, picking locks, and spotting when someone is telling a lie, he can improvise a self-defense weapon, pack a perfect emergency kit, and disappear off the grid if necessary. He has also honed his “positive awareness”—a heightened sense of his surroundings that allows him to spot suspicious and potentially dangerous behavior—on the street, in a taxi, at the airport, when dining out, or in any other situation.

In this book, you will learn how to:

• prevent home invasions, carjackings, muggings, and other violent crimes
• run counter-surveillance and avoid becoming a soft target
• recognize common scams at home and abroad
• become a human lie detector in any setting, including business negotiations
• gain peace of mind by being prepared for anything instead of uninformed or afraid

 Plus: The Preppers Guide to Food Storage

No list of books would be complete without my own book, The Prepper’s Guide to Food Storage.  The eBook print version is available.

Help support Backdoor Survival. Purchases earn a small commission and for that I thank you!


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59 Responses to “Prepper Book Festival 10: Spy Secrets That Can Save Your Life”

  1. I love to read, especially things that can be helpful. We live in an age where there is 24-7 danger. Looks like this would be both helpful and informative. Keep Looking UP

  2. Some budget friendly items in our kit would be glow Sticks (4 for $1) and a fire starter tin with cotton balls, vasolin, and a Bic lighter.

  3. The most budget friendly items I have include fresnel lenses for starting fires. You can get a few credit card sized ones for a dollar. Also, I think heirloom seeds deliver a lot of bang for the buck. Buy once, learn how to save seeds (and actually do it), and you can get food for the rest of your life.

  4. I would say the most budget friendly items in my kit are the recharged AA batteries as they only only cost a fraction of a cent (cost of electricity to recharge them). And I would go along with the beans and the rice. Pretty inexpensive.
    I would love to no, I need to read this book so please let me be a winner. Thanks for all that you do for us and keep up the good work.

  5. The most budget friendly items in my kit are the items I found at a garage sale – headlamps for $1, which work perfectly! These are followed by the dollar store items I purchased, along with the items given to me by my prepping neighbors.

    My son has gotten the prepping bug and is always watching out for items to add to our packs (he’s a natural bargain hunter, having had to grow up in a single parent home).

  6. The most budget friendly thing is the Treadle sewing machine I have. Hey It was free, free is always good. Other than than that I agree the beans, rice,etc are the most economical and the knowledge I’m acquiring. Would love to receive the book. Hope all is well where you’re at and the scorpions aren’t invading for winter. My Brother lives in desert too and he says, invariably one or two try to winter in the house with them.

  7. There are a lot of thrift items that could be listed. It’s surprising how many when you stop to think about it. The comments here give some of them.

  8. The most budget friendly ideas probably include Ramen noodles, other easy-to-cook foods that only require adding hot water or heat, pastas and canned sauces. Canned goods can be acquired a few at a time. Thrift stores and garage sales can be economical ways to pick up camping supplies, cast iron cookware, etc.

  9. My most budget friendly items are the numerous free samples that I’ve amassed. The individual aspirins, vitamins, food bars, etc. are packaged perfectly to fit into a BOB or first aid kit.

  10. The most budget friendly items would include the things I’ve made (i.e.,fire starters) or purchased on sale or from dollar stores.

  11. The most budget friendly item in my go bags is the following. I childs kitchen cook set. A while back I found a tip about a stainless steel three pcs childs kitchen cook set sold by Ikea. There’s a pot with lid, frying pan and colander for less then $10.00. Why spend a small fortune on a titanium cook set that you’ll use a handful of time or never.

  12. I plan to use SOTOS to purify my water, so I need plenty of coffee filters. They are cheap. They would be used to filter the large particle of dirt, before using SOTOS.

  13. I fear for the safety of my grandchildren, so any knowledge I can pass along to them is a great thing. I would love to add this book to our little library and share these things in such uncertain times. Thanks

  14. I’ve found some great survival items at the 99 cent store and yes they do have brand names there too. I stick with products I’m tried and know they work like tapes, string and fix-it items you can keep stocked for everyday use or for emergencies.

  15. Picked up several 6 packs of lighters recently at walmart for less than a dollar per pack after using a couple of $2 off coupons from the Sunday paper. Also found on the art aisle a small nylon cylinder shaped zippered bag for 97 cents. I assume its designed for art pencils but it didn’t say. It holds more items than a mint tin and has a loop on the end. I’ve hung this from a lanyard around my neck on several outdoor excursions when I didn’t want to take a larger pack.

  16. Most budget friendly items are all the things I buy when they are on sale, the lint I save from my dryer that along with empty TP rolls form my fire starters, and all the free and nearly free books I get on kindle to increase my knowledge. (I just need to spend more time reading them.)

  17. I like shopping for items at yard sales. Books are a great source of information you can use to inhance your skill sets.

  18. Most of my budget preps are repurposed or homemade. From knives made from old two man saws, to fire starters made from scrap products. I also find cheap treasures at yard sales, auctions, and flea markets. Some of the best are items you can swap for at fleamarkets with your own extra stuff.

  19. It seems that the most budget-friendly item for everyone should be the means of storing or obtaining water should the supply of drinking water ever be threatened. Water is so necessary for our survival. It is very inexpensive to prepare for now… compared to how priceless it could very quickly become. Thanks so much for providing this very worthy informational website!

  20. Budget varies with situation – what’s budget friendly now may not be in the future.
    That said, I have to agree with some of the other commenters – rice and beans are the most budget friendly I have at this time.

  21. Our most budget friendly items in our survival kit are paraffin/dryer lint/egg carton firestarters, solar powered yard lights, and water.

  22. I have all his videos. Good stuff. Situational awareness, identifying threats, picking locks, escaping being tied up with rope, duct tape, or zip ties and a lot more.

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