Most people think of International Investigators and our cell phone forensic lab as the gatherers of evidence and facts to prove crime or wrong doing. Yes, we do that, but we want to be certain that every person who loves anyone also realizes what else can be done with a cell phone and cell phone forensics.
A good example is when an airplane went missing in the mountains of Nevada. Two adults and four children were missing for four days in rugged terrain and frigid temperatures.
The search and rescue efforts were spread out over a wide area covering miles and miles of mountains and valleys not easily accessible – and were turning up nothing.
It was then that cell phone forensics were employed. A cellphone expert began pinging the cell phone of the missing adults. Through cell phone tracking and cell tower triangulation, the rescue area was reduced and efforts were focused on a more targeted area.
While the efforts were not successful in locating the specific cellular location of the phones, the search area was narrowed significantly. That little tool the size of a deck of cards was the link, the cellphone witness; that helped in locating the missing people. They needed medical attention, but were not seriously hurt.
Cellular tower triangulation can be used to prove where a phone has been or current location and is useful in criminal cases. But forensic cell tower evidence can be the difference between life and death in a missing persons cases. In some cases cellular location evidence can pinpoint to within a few 100 yards the location of a mobile phone (which is very helpful for fugitive recovery agents) and even if the area is more generalized, a missing person in danger or hurt can be found.
One of the key elements, though, is that the records used in cell tower triangulation are not kept forever and have to be acquired legally through proper channels from the cell service providers. That takes time and it could be time you don’t have before records are destroyed.
If you find yourself in a situation where a loved one is missing, don’t delay. Act fast. Contact International Investigators for help as soon as possible. Time is not your friend in these situations.
-T. Wilcox, CEO, International Investigators