Have you ever seen a movie where a certain character had to run away, hide from the world and decided to throw away their cell phone so that they couldn’t be tracked? Well, that is cell phone pinging. The process involves a tough system of sending signals from towers to the cell phone and then getting back information that lets you know the location details of the device. Is it legal, is it safe, is it helpful, what is it all about? Keep reading to get answers to all these questions.
How it happens
Every cell phone is connected to one tower at all times in order to receive signals and connection. The connection to a certain tower is what helps determine the location of the mobile. If you want to get your cell phone located, you can contact the carrier service. Of course, you cannot randomly state a mobile number and ask for its location. The company will ask you multiple questions in order to ensure that you’re legally allowed to trace the location of the mobile. Let’s suppose all of this process is cleared, the company will check the servers to find out the nearest tower that was most recently connected to your mobile phone.
The problem usually arises with the authorization. You, as a local citizen, do not have the authority to get access to information like cell phone pinging. Legal companies, 911 centers, law enforcing agencies, and police department are among some of the authorities who can get a cell phone pinged. If you’re in a situation where you need to get a ping call, you should contact the higher authorities. They can take care of the rest.
The legal side
Ping calls definitely sound like an invasion of privacy. Look at it this way; you’re in your room right now with your phone but there is information out there that can allow the authorities to track your exact location. These people are well aware of where you’re headed to, where you’ve been, etc. This gives rise to the question that are ping calls lawful?
The Telephone Records and Privacy Protection Act 2006 strictly applies to protection of location information of the devices. Similarly, the Telecommunications Act of 1996 has a whole section which states that service carriers must keep all kinds of customer information confidential and private. This means cell phone pinging is completely illegal unless it is done for investigation purposes by an authorized authority.
The law only allows ping calls if there is a lawful warrant. Without that, if anyone proceeds to trace the location, there are strict consequences. Lawyers who promote the collection of such evidence have a threat of getting their license canceled. Ping calls are labeled as being equal to following and stalking a person. Therefore, even if you need to track your own stolen device, you need to report to the police and let them take care of it from that point on.
Ping calls can be extremely helpful or a hideous crime. Make sure you do it with the assistance of the right authorities to stay away from trouble.