Spartan9 Dispatch for March 2024

This month - Whistler released, Incident Manager close to release, and Station XV bags and accessories now available for sale.

It’s been yet another exhausting month.


What we’ve been doing, where we’ve been travelling, and what’s next.

Bags, bags and more bags

A container of bags is currently making its way from Vietnam to Singapore. More below.


Our whistleblowing application has been rebuilt from the ground-up and is now available.

Incident Manager

New features added to our Incident Manager application. Inching closer to launch.


Training workshops and customised training solutions.

Intelligence Operations

This month I delivered a 2-hour Intelligence Operations training session for a prominent NGO.

Our Intelligence Operations module is probably our most interesting training module. It reveals how intelligence agencies target organisations and individuals, and provides practical advice for mitigating the threat.

The module focuses on four key aspects:

  1. Appreciating the threat from hostile intelligence agencies.
  2. How intelligence targeting works.
  3. How intelligence agencies cultivate and recruit people.
  4. How organisations and individuals can counter intelligence operations.

If your organisation would be interested in participating in a similar module, please reach out.


Updates on our applications.


As mentioned last month, with a co-founder, I’ve been running an application called Whistler since 2015.

Whistler is a simple and secure whistleblowing application that enables organisations to receive and manage confidential reports from whistleblowers. We originally built Whistler due to the inherent risks associated with whistleblowers using normal email addresses and telephone hotlines for what may be extremely sensitive reports.

I’ve completed a full rewrite of the application, which is now online.

There are a lot of changes and improvements. Here’s a few of the key ones:

  • We’ve upgraded report encryption from AE-128 to AES-256.
  • We’ve replaced SMS notifications with email notifications.
  • We’ve introduced a Primary Account Holder dashboard.
  • Primary Account Holders can now send test reports.
  • Reports can now be archived and deleted.

Since last month’s newsletter, I’ve also added a few new features:

  • Primary Account Holders and Authorised Persons can now create and manage cases.
  • Stripe subscription payments is now integrated into the application, offering additional payment tiers.

I’ve completed the process of moving our existing customers across to the new application.

If you’re looking for a simple and secure whistleblowing solution for your company, please reach out and I can either provide a demo or set you up for a trial. If you know of anyone who might be interested in Whistler, please send them my way.

You can learn more here.

Incident Manager Application

I’ve spent quite a bit of time on Incident Manager this month. I’ve updated the database to use UUIDs, which will be much better for scalability and security.

I’ve also implemented the following features:

  • Email invitations and notifications now work.
  • Teams can now invite observers and advisors to incidents.
  • Teams can now activate automated reporting for an incident.

I’ll be pushing out these updates in the next week or so for our trial users.

The next (and final) step will be to integrate Stripe for subscription payments.

If you’d be interested in participating in a trial of the application, please reach out.


Updates on our in-house gear, sharing a behind-the-scenes look at our design and manufacturing processes.

Vietnam Factory Visit

I was in Vietnam earlier this month to conduct quality control checks for the first production run of bags. The bags have been dispatched and are now in a container onboard a ship somewhere between Vietnam and Singapore. While I was at the factory, I also worked on the prototypes for several new designs. The sampling team was able to achieve something I didn’t think was possible, and I can’t wait to share the result.


The big news this month is that Station XV is good to go.

I’ve spent the last couple of days finishing up the Station XV website, integrating Shopify, and taking (and re-taking) product photos. At long last, it’s my pleasure to announce that the Station XV website is now online and we’re ready to take orders.

Stocks are limited until the full shipment arrives in Singapore. The priority will be to fulfil pre-orders.

Just note that I’m still getting the hang of Shopify’s settings, so if you come across anything weird when ordering, please reach out and let me know.


Links to our latest articles.

No articles

No articles this month. Too busy with code and bags.


We’ve published a number of books on crisis management, travel security and security evacuations.

Migration of Books to Shopify

I’m in the process of moving all of my e-books across to Shopify, using the same account as the bags. It doesn’t make sense to maintain two platforms and two sets of subscriptions.

What does this mean for those of you who have already purchased books via the old platform? I’ve downloaded a list of customer purchases, so if you happen to e-misplace a book, just reach out and I’ll verify your past purchase and send you a download link to the book on the new platform. I haven’t worked out how to do bundles on Shopify as yet, but will get to that next.

There’s no change to the Apple Books setup for those of you who prefer to purchase on Apple Books.

Dangerous Travels

The ‘Dangerous Travels’ book is now in the wild. 52 articles, 437 pages and around 100,000 words focused on travel security. With articles relevant for organisations and individuals, there really is something for everyone.

Thanks to everyone who has purchased a copy since I launched the new book last month.

You can check out Dangerous Travels here.

Bulk Orders

Several highly regarded organisations (and one prestigious university) have purchased copies of our books for their teams. If your team would benefit from the knowledge and experience contained in our books, please reach out. We can provide discounts for bulk orders.


Links to interesting articles worth your time. This month: Russian information operations, Chinese sextortion, dating app murders, the use of facial recognition technology to target protestors, and other topics.

Russia’s influence in Kazakhstan is increasing despite the war in Ukraine. Some hoped the war would pivot Astana’s foreign policy towards the West – but economic ties with Moscow have deepened. (Chatham House). Read here.

Undermining Ukraine: How Russia widened its global information war in 2023. (Atlantic Council). Read here.

Chinese sextortion scammers are flooding Twitter. Scammers are targeting Chinese-language users, harassing political dissidents and influential figures. (Rest of World). Read here. Why Chinese policing in Pacific island countries is a problem. (ASPI). Read here.

After dating app murders spike in Colombia, Match Group offers to help the police. Tinder’s parent company attended an unprecedented meeting with the U.S. Embassy and local authorities in Colombia to curb attacks against foreigners. (Rest of World). Read here.

A Suspicious Pattern Alarming the Ukrainian Military. A Ukrainian military source believes that Russia’s long-range strikes are aimed using satellite imagery provided by U.S. companies. (The Atlantic). Read here.

There will be no ‘short, sharp’ war. A fight between the US and China would likely go on for years.. (Atlantic Council). Read here.

The changing face of protest. Mass protests used to offer a degree of safety in numbers. Facial recognition technology changes the equation. (Rest of World). Read here.

That’s it for this month, folks.

Thanks for reading and stay safe out there.

Grant Rayner


View all newsletters