Just like that popular TV show says, “You are being watched.” Surveillance equipment is evident on buildings, in stores, on streets and just about everywhere you go and most of it is in no way covert surveillance.
Surveillance cameras are a double-edged sword. While some people are unnerved by the constant video of their actions and behaviors, other people, those who are falsely accused of a crime, are thankful for that video because it becomes evidence that they are not guilty of the crime. Computer surveillance and listening devices are now more likely to be spy equipment than the ever-present surveillance camera.
People are more likely to be victims of covert cell phone tracking than video tracking. Yes, once again the wonders of the cell phone can be used against someone. It is the hands of the tracker that make cellphone tracking either a good thing or a bad thing.
With GPS capabilities in smart phones, cell phone monitoring is a service that is actually sold by carriers to parents and caregivers of people with disabilities such as autism or Alzheimer’s Disease. GPS is activated and the subject’s whereabouts are available at a moment’s notice to the person monitoring the subject’s phone. What a great tool for parents of a missing child or teen or for the person with dementia who has wondered out the door unseen.
Cell phone spying and cell phone monitoring is another story when it involves malware or software that is being used to stalk or harass someone. Cellphone experts who provide cellular phone forensics know that cell phone spyware is everywhere and is being used for mobile phone tracking by bad people every day. Phones are being hacked and malware installed by every day, average people, too. Spouses or significant others suspicious of their partner, employees wanting to keep an eye on their bosses so they can steal and even bosses who suspect employees of not putting in their full day’s work.
The cellular location evidence that is available through cell phone GPS software is something uses to provide important timeline and location information to attorneys and clients. It is more than using cell phone forensic tools to extract critical data. For evidentiary purposes, the actual cell phone carrier records, cell tower triangulation and the GPS trackpoint data and track log are correlated. Time and location can be detailed down to the minute, the route taken and specific locations.
So, smile for the cameras. Keep that GPS on your cell phone in your pocket. You might just need the evidence it provides one day. If you do, call – our digital forensics experts here to help.
-Brenda McGinley, CEO, All in Investigations, All in Investigations