- Jul 31, 2013
GPS Tracking Devices
Are You Being Followed?
Do you ever get that feeling that you're being followed? Maybe you are. Everyone from law enforcement to car dealers are using GPS Devices to track people's rides. If you suspect something is up, you might want to check the following places.
Under Your Car
Last year, 20-year-old college student Yasir Afifi found this GPS tracking device underneath his car during a routine oil change. The device was affixed by magnet ''near the exhaust but futher in,'' according to Afifi's friend who turned to the online community Reddit to identify the device.
According to Afifi, FBI agents approached him to retrieve the device days after its discovery. Despite being a U.S. citizen, he was apparently under suspicion due to his frequent travels to Egypt and the Middle East, and for being the son of a Muslim community leader.
Under Your Dash
Conley Moret owns a car dealership that serves folks with bad or no credit. As part of his sales agreement, Moret equips his vehicles with GPS tracking devices. One of Moret's customers fell behind on their payments and tried to make off with the vehicle without ponying up the money owed. According to a press release from Rocky Mountain Tracking, Moret was able to use a Smart Tracker GPS device purchased from the company to retrieve the stolen vehicle.
According to RMT's website, ''the [Smart Tracker] unit is most commonly mounted under the dash inside the vehicle,'' but they do sell internal and external waterproof mounts as well. Unlike some of the GPS tracking devices used by law enforcement, the Smart Tracker can be purchased online by anyone for the modest price of $175.
Rocky Mountain Tracking offers another unique GPS device called the Tracking Key. This unit ships with a USB connector which, when plugged into your PC, rebuilds all travel activity and presents it in custom reports and animated map routes. Another nifty feature is the built-in motion detector used to extend the life of the AAA batteries which power the unit.
Best of all--or worst of all, depending on your point of view--the Tracking Key is water resistant and equipped with a powerful magnet, used to mount the unit. In other words: no fussy installation required. You can be on your way to stalking your prey in less than a day! (Our words, not theirs).
What Gives You The Right?
All kidding and paranoia aside, there are many legitimate reasons one might require a GPS tracking device. For example: parents keeping tabs on their teen drivers or rental car services staying on top of their fleet.
The Supreme Court ruled unanimously on Monday, Jan 23, 2012 that a warrant must be obtained by law enforcement in order to track a suspect via GPS device. GPS tracking was found to constitute a "search or seizure within the meaning of the Fourth Amendment," therefore violating a suspect's rights when carried out without a proper search warrant.