International Mobile Subscriber Identity (IMSI) catchers let police track cell phone locations bymimicking an actual cell tower. The devices present a signal to cell phones in their range that cause the phones to try to register as if it were a real tower.
People also ask
How can the police track a cell phone?
鈥減ing鈥?phones to force them into revealing their location. This technique relies on Enhanced 911 (E911) data, which allows law enforcement to pinpoint the location of cell phones that have placed 911 calls; a provider can also make a reverse 911 call, allowing the police to invisibly track a
Can police use triangulation to track a cell phone?
Triangulation is not an exact science, however, and software programs are able only to estimate the phone’s position rather than precisely pinpoint its exact location. Still, triangulation allows police to place cell phones鈥攁nd, presumably, the cell phone user鈥攊n general neighborhoods, either in real time or in recent history.
How does law enforcement use Stingrays to track phones?
Law enforcement can use a stingray either to identify all of the phones in the vicinity of the stingray or a specific phone, even when the phones are not in use. Law enforcement can then, with a subpoena, ask a phone carrier to provide the customer name and address associated with that number or numbers.
How do cell phones track their own location?
With many more reference points, the phone can identify its own location to within a few feet. The phone then uses a software application that runs in the background (and is not visible to the user), to report its location back to the wireless service provider.