GPS stands for global positioning system. It is a satellite-based system that is used to calculate and locate the position of a given object on a global level. In this system, satellites and earth stations work side by side to calculate the coordinates of an object, say a person, on the globe. GPS works on the concept of navigation and cellular-signal triangulation and is surely a very in-demand technology. Nowadays, it is even possible to track cell phone location with the help of GPS cell phone tracking facility. All the information that a GPS-enabled phone provides comes from a satellite, it uplinks to. But does this amount to invasion of privacy? In this article, we would be looking into the privacy issues associated with GPS cell phone tracking.
GPS Technology: Both a Curse and a Boon
GPS finds its use in fields like communication, traveling and even defense. In fact, it was the department of defense that invented this technology in the first place. GPS tracking devices are fully dedicated to serve tracking purposes and can certainly be used in both good and bad ways. For instance, GPS vehicle tracking systems can be used to track the location of stolen vehicles. With the advent of mobile technology, GPS is now available to common man. It's an integral part of mobile phones. If your cell phone is GPS-enabled, you are definitely more vulnerable. A GPS-enabled phone is a transmitter and a receiver at the same time. With GPS navigation and cellular-signal triangulation, it's possible to track the location of a cell phone and thus know the whereabouts of the cell phone user.
It is now possible to track a GPS-enabled cell phone with the help of certain web-based GPS applications for free. You just need to install such an application on your phone. You can track the cell phone location by registering on a website that facilitate such a service. Whenever you access such a website and enter the login name and password, the cell phone location would be displayed on a map given by that particular website. BuddyWay, InstaMapper and Accutracking are some of the online services that can help you track the cell phone location for free. Such a software that can help you track the cell phones that have GPS enabled in them. If your phone isn't GPS-enabled, you could download and install Google Latitude application on your phone using your Gmail login name and password. This is also a free service. You can then track your cell phone location on a Google map. You can use iGoogle gadget to track the locations of those who have added you on Google Latitude.
If a phone is equipped with a GPS chip, you can activate the GPS functions through such web-based applications. Since the location of the cell phone can be tracked online after you enter the login name and password, it would be best to use a complicated alphanumeric password to lower the risk of someone else hacking into the account. From serious emergencies to keeping a tab on your kids, GPS does it all. Lately GPS tracking applications that are available for free provide features like message updates. For instance, when your kid reaches some place that he has left for, you will receive a message. In most countries these facilities are not available without proper legal permissions. So, in most of the countries GPS finds its use in travel and emergency situations like accidents, kidnappings and theft only. However, the issue of invasion of privacy does arise when such a software is used while keeping the bearer of the cell phone in the dark. While you can justify the use of GPS tracking software to track the movements of young children or elderly, in other cases the GPS cell phone tracking would amount to an invasion of privacy.
Free Cell Phone Tracking Privacy Issues
Free cell phone tracking is a boon in most cases, but it can turn into a curse if it is used in unethical ways. Basically, 'GPS cell phone tracking and privacy' is a paradoxical statement. The free GPS tracking privacy issues has certainly been widely debated. While GPS is a great tool when it comes to navigation, GPS applications such as a free GPS cell phone tracker can certainly be misused. Nowadays, certain programs can help you access the cell phone's call logs and even the text messages. Well, tracking the movements of a child to protect him/her is fine, but there could be times when parents could find it hard to let go and may become overprotective. More often than not, a suspicious spouse may be tempted to use such a tracking software to know if his/her suspicions are true. However, a line has to be drawn somewhere. Can you imagine finding out one fine day that someone was keeping track of you, for a year or so? He knew where you went, who you met and even what you did. Communication technologies have always had a problem when it came to privacy issues. People need to know, that they have to respect the other person's privacy. Remember some time ago, cell phone cameras faced the same issue. It is really good that cell phone tracking needs legal permission in most countries and the use of such applications must be regulated. Privacy is one right that should be made compulsorily available to every human being. Privacy should be made a birthright unless and until required otherwise, for legal and security reasons.
It's high time that people understand, they should not take everything for granted, at least not other people's personal space. Technologies are to be used for ethical and beneficial reasons. Free cell phone tracking through GPS facility may turn out to be a nuisance any day. So please do take care when working with such modern technologies, because with them you will never know when you cross your limits.