Is Phone Tracking - OK With The Law?

Whenever it comes to cellphone tracking the first and the foremost question that comes to our mind is whether spying on someone’s cell phone is actually legal or not. Well for those who are into cellphone hacking this question might be not of much relevance, but for those who are doing this for some purpose it is a matter of great concern as they do not wish to end up in any legal soup.

This question is very reasonable if you look at it from the technology perspective. There are several powerful features and apps available in your smartphone, like GPS tracking, SMS interception, call recording, etc. that allow anyone to spy on you even without your knowledge. The person who is spying on you can not only check your location using these features but can also decipher your browsing history, call logs, etc.

Though it is not necessary that some individual is tracking you for some personal reason, even some government agencies allow cell phone spying if they found something suspicious. This fact that even government agencies use cell phone tracking tools for spying makes it difficult to say that its illegal. However, there are some restriction involved in cell phone tracking which makes it limited to a certain audience with certain agenda only.

Though as per law cell phone spying is illegal and can bring negative consequences as well. But a software developer is free to work on a cellphone monitoring tool and also market it freely without fear of being tangled in legal trouble. The real legal concerns come on its intended use by the buyer. Though, privacy laws for country and region are different, but the general rule of thumb remains the same that you must be the owner of the mobile phone you are willing to track and you are not allowed to infringe someone else’s privacy by using cell phone tracking technology. You must notify the adult user of your cell phone tracking if you are spying on them for one or the other reason. However, there are some exceptions to using cell phone spying tools, which are:

  • Monitoring your children’s cell phone and their activity
  • Monitoring the cell phones issued by the company to any employee

Though, in this as well, law states that you must inform your children and employees beforehand of your actions. In case of employees spying on the company issued cell phones comes as a contractual clause signed by the employees at the time of hiring. If you are not informing the adult of you spying/tracking/monitoring activities on their device then you are breaking the law and your evidences will also be termed as impermissible in case you decide to take any legal action against the person you are spying on. This means, if you are not informing your employee about the tracking guidelines, then you will not be able to use any evidence of fraudulent activity against them brought through spying of their device.

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