Either Way, Cell Phone Forensics Uncovers the FactsI recently wrote about computer rental retailers that were caught illegally watching lessees’ activities and gathering data through computer monitoring software meant to keep track of rented computers. That sort of monitoring is illegal, but there is another type of monitoring that may fall into a gray area.

Parents are monitoring their children’s cell phone activities. There is a long discussion of the issue in an article on Laptopmap.com. It begins:

“Privacy ends where safety begins,” said Marje Monroe, a clinical social worker, educator and co-founder of ChildrenOnline.org. She consults with schools across the country to help students and parents cope with the dizzying world of social networking, cyberbullying and smartphones.

There are all the conversations taking place about the line between personal information and privacy and security on a national level as well, so the conversation is not moot.

I won’t say whether parents should or should not monitor their children’s cell phone or computer activity, but it could set a precedent in some minds that it is okay to monitor the activities of others – and the reasoning could be “for their safety” whether that is the case or not.

International Investigators are cell phone investigation experts. We know about cell phone spying and mobile phone tracking. Over the last several years as cell phone use has ballooned, we have seen the incidence of cell phone surveillance balloon as well. We have a professional lab equipped with cell phone forensic tools that allow us to perform mobile device forensics for cell phone spyware detection and the production of cellular location evidence.

We work with attorneys and service providers on the legal wording for cell records that conforms with the legal process for cell records. The proper subpoena language for cell records or subpoena language for messages could mean the difference between obtaining evidence or not because carriers destroy data on a regular basis due to the volume of data. As that volume increases, the time frame to request preservation of data decreases. So the time it takes to properly document the request is critical.

The point is that cell phone use is a tool – and that can be a tool in the hands of the good guys or a tool in the hands of a bad guy. Cell phone monitoring is also a tool and the same element of human nature applies. A parent could be concerned about the safety of a child or a bad guy could be stalking a child.

In either case there are laws and cell phone legal compliance is what separates whether we are gathering cellular phone forensics evidence to catch a mobile spy or to safeguard the privacy of an individual.

If you have a client who thinks someone is spying on them or gathering data about them though mobile phone tracking, International Investigators professional cell phone forensics experts are ready to be of service.

-T. Wilcox, CEO, International Investigators