Kiwi Polemicist

May 28, 2009

• Police want to track cellphone locations

According to Stuff, the police want to bring in a new system that will allow people to call for police help using text messages. But there’s a kicker: the police want to “help locate people by tracking their cellphone signal”.

I’ve had a look on the web and I can’t find any more specific information (let me know if you can find anything), but giving police the ability to track cellphone locations is very bad news if you value freedom.

For this system to be effective in rendering help it’s going to have to give a pretty accurate location and cellphone technology isn’t good at that. I’ll bet that one day having GPS in cellphones will be compulsory, for your own good naturally, and before you know it the police will be able to accurately track any cellphone at will.

The state thugs in blue are employing a Trojan Horse (i.e. calling for help via text messages) in order to increase their surveillance abilities.

1984-was-not-supposed-to-be-an-instruction-manual

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8 Comments »

  1. “but giving police the ability to track cellphone locations is very bad news if you value freedom”

    The police have had the ability to do this for appox 10 years. You are rather late worrying about it. The technology uses triangulation off the base stations no need for GPS.
    In fact for Safety situations GPS does not add very much, its more useful for mapping situations.

    “retty accurate location and cellphone technology isn’t good at that. ” and you got that from where??? A no GPS triangulation will put you within a 300m circle. For most situations thats just fine, broken down on a road but you dont know where, probably only one road in that 300 m circle and you are somewhere on 300 m of it. Fallen down a mountain, they will find you in mins if that know where you are within 300m.

    Targeting a missile onto your car, yes need better than 300m.

    “nd before you know it the police will be able to accurately track any cellphone at will” they already do and have been since at least 1996.

    Sb

    Comment by Sb — May 31, 2009 @ 11:16 am

    • Sb: there may be a theoretical ability to triangulate cellphone signals, but in practical terms this does not yet exist in NZ. E.g. (1) if the police receive a silent 111 {emergency call} from a cellphone there is nothing they can do and (2) when motorists in rural areas have driven off the road and made a cellphone call the police have been unable to pinpoint the location of the crash.

      Comment by Kiwi Polemicist — June 1, 2009 @ 10:48 am

  2. “Sb: there may be a theoretical ability to triangulate cellphone signals, but in practical terms this does not yet exist in NZ” – really thats strange I have seen it working, we do this for the NZ police approx twice a month!.

    You are not as smart as you think you are, disclaimer I build and run cellphone networks for a living, and have just built one called XT for telecom! I do know what I am talking about here. Three years ago we built a demonstrator for telecom which would have allowed them to track 200K users in realtime using triangulation off the cell towers in Wellington. The technology worked but the business case did not hold up.

    “E.g. (1) if the police receive a silent 111 {emergency call} from a cellphone there is nothing they can do and ” really so the guy that the cops had us trace and was found having fallen in a ravine and broken his leg a couple of months ago we found him how? spells ? magic? or a guy called Ben typing at the tracking terminal?

    I could go on with more examples of stuff you say we cant do but what would be the point?

    Comment by Sb — June 1, 2009 @ 12:20 pm

  3. That is a bad news for our privacy. But, that is needed in order to keep us save.

    Comment by orangndut — July 20, 2009 @ 11:08 pm

    • orangndut: I agree with your first sentence, but not the second one. We do not need the state to keep ourselves safe.

      Comment by Kiwi Polemicist — July 21, 2009 @ 11:11 pm

  4. does this not breach some sort of privacy act

    Comment by Anonymous — May 9, 2010 @ 10:43 pm

  5. does this not breach some privacy act

    Comment by Anonymous — May 9, 2010 @ 10:44 pm


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