When are You not Legal Tracking a Phone and What Can Go Wrong?
When a person’s mobile phone is lost, he wishes to get it back by all means. In such a case, the first thing that strikes the mind is phone tracking. Then the very next thought that comes to the mind is that whether the way of tracking chosen is legal or not. Apart from the network providers and the handset providers, the web is flooded with number of phone tracking apps and agencies. People usually fall prey to the illegal activities and scams. So, it becomes necessary for a user to be aware of the related information about the phone tracking.
Tracking your own lost phone is no crime but tracking someone else’s phone without permission is held up as illegal. Illegality is connected to the phone tracking and there are many laws against it. Phone tracking is dealt differently in different nations and so the laws are different as well. Locating or positioning of an individual is regarded as highly private issue. Network operators and agencies that have the right of tracking have to abide by the strict ethics and security measures which are recommended by the law.
Let’s talk about the predators first.
Phone tracking for many people have become an engaging activity wherein they can track someone’s daily activity as per their fancy. Many of them have made this a business and use tracking of phone as a part of the spying activity. They charge huge sums of money from the clients in return of the tracking data. All this spying and tracking of phone stands illegal in most of the countries of the world. There are few detective agencies other than the police that are permitted to track the phones. These agencies are certified by the government. Following is the list of bodies which can legally track the phones.
Who are the legal bodies that have the right to track the phones?
• Civil agencies approved by the nation’s judiciary
• Security groups approved by the laws
• Network operators
• Handset making companies
Who usually serve as a prey?
• People in search of their lost phone devices
• People who wish to track someone’s daily activities
• Spouse who wish to spy on their other half
People belonging to any of the above mentioned groups easily become the victims to this vicious market of illegal tracking. The victim’s urge of getting back his device or the tracking data is facilitated by the varied number of apps and software available on the web. Without much-a-do, victims simply opt for a way and then get strangled by it. Awareness of the apps is very much required. Actions performed in haste are usually regretted. Let me tell you about the legality attached to the tracking.
Let us discuss in detail the repercussions that you might face in case of illegal phone tracking in different nations.
In UK, the law says that the consent of the mobile phone owner is required for the tracking by the mobile phone tracking services. If the tracking is related to a crime, then a warrant issued by a UK court is required. The warrant can only be obtained by the police and government agencies.
In a recent case, an Australian shopping mall was in news for tracking the customer movement in the mall through mobile phone signals. It was presented as a well thought of CRM activity by them. In Australia the mall management was not accused. So, it is more or less legal there.
In US on the other side, this will be held as an illegal activity. There will be a charge against you for which there will be a punishment or a big fat fine. In a recent report, NSA’s use of phone tracking (National Security Agency) of US was considered legal by the court saying that tracking the data of the millions of US citizens serves as a valuable part of the nation’s weapon store to counter the acts of terrorism.
Like US, Indian law also holds the phone tracking, without permission, as illegal. Law has only granted the rights of tracking to the network operators, handsets producers and the government civil bodies like police, CBI, etc.
Most of the European nations have a legal guarantee on the secrecy of correspondence. They believe that the location data obtained from mobile phone networks is of equal importance as the communication. Hence they have laws protecting both the location data as well as the communication itself.
These are only a few popular places. The information about the rest can be obtained from the web. In almost all the countries, tracking used for spying is considered a punishable act and the victims have to bear the harsh consequences. The nations grant permits to few programs or organizations which require phone tracking depending on the cause.
For an individual, tracking is legal only in case of loss of one’s handset. The legal means for the individuals are very few. Following are few do’s and don’ts that one should keep in mind before moving ahead with the phone tracking activity.
• Opt for the legal tracking ways
• Contact the network operators and handset makers
• Check for the certificate of the agency that you opt for
• Check for the license of the tracking software you have selected for downloading
• Do not furnish your personal details like bank ids, passwords, etc. to any of the agencies
• Do not simply believe on word of mouth
Half knowledge generally proves to be injurious. So, it becomes vital for an individual to enquire about the tracking software or an agency before actually using it or its services respectively. ‘Crime never pays’, crime once committed will always have its dreadful consequences. So, it is very important to be aware and play safe. You can track your phone once lost but in a legal and a safe manner.