Mobile Tracking, Hacking And Spying
There's a new industry in town - mobile phone tracking, cell phone tracking, tracker phones, cell phone spying - call it what you will but as with just about every other industry I can think of there are most definitely two sides to this new 'coin'.
Over the past few months there have been a number of high profile cases in the media surrounding the monitoring of mobile phones in one guise or another. From smartphones running certain operating systems allegedly recording user locations and interactions to a major media company allegedly 'hacking' into user's mobile phone records and voicemails.
In addition to these newsworthy instances there are also a proliferation of emerging 'spy' products that claim to be able be 'undetectable' when installed on a mobile phone and enable customers to be able to 'catch cheating spouses' or 'spy on employees' and the like.
The high profile stories mentioned at the beginning of this piece have been analysed, commented on and re-analysed - hundreds and even thousands of times in the popular, legal and technical media - they are what they are and beyond the scope of this article...which is not to say they might be something worth revisiting at a later stage.
No, the area of interest here are the 'spy apps' that now pop up as soon as 'mobile tracking' or any similarly themed search is put into a search engine. These products all focus on the negative side of what this emerging mobile technology can be used for - "catch a cheating spouse", "spy on employees" and "check up on what your children are doing, who they are talking to and what they are saying" are all headline sales pitches of these types of products.
'Features' supposedly include listening in and recording conversations, accessing text message, emails, photos and voicemails and even opening the microphone to listen in to what's happening around the phone even if it's switched off! Oh and location tracking too - although this is way down the list of features.
This piece is to let prospective business or family customers know that this highly publicised 'covert' side of location tracking via mobile devices is not the only side - in fact it is very much a minor part of this fledgling sector, and one to be more than just a little wary of.
There are reputable businesses that provide bona fide and important services relating to mobile phone tracking and associated products that can save businesses real money, provide employees real safety when working alone and parents real peace of mind when there growing family start to stretch its proverbial wings.
This is just a word of warning not to be taken in by all the marketing hype surrounding some of these products. Be wary of anything that offers 'spy' or 'covert' services or are allegedly 'untraceable' as you can bet that the company providing the services will have the fine print of their T's & C's wrapped up so tight legally it will be you who could be breaking the law if you use them in any other way than as prescribed within the very fine and very specific print.
My advice is to check that fine print very, very carefully - there will be stipulations on how, when and where the product can be used and if you don't work within these then the legal responsibility could rest with you. Check out the company providing prospective services - where are they based, are they credible, do they have news, blogs, support contact numbers?
Common sense that we all use in our day to day lives - just don't get put off by this being new technology or flashy internet ads or websites. Take a little time and opt for a service you feel you can trust.
by: Chris Everitt