Right at the present moment cell phone spying software is a hot topic in the media. The owners of the software install spy apps to the targets phones and are then able to get a clear picture of all interactions, contacts and relocations. At the present moment there is a number of mobile tracking companies that offer such products and some of them got a lot of negative publicity of late.
One of them is StealthGenie – a software company owned by a Danish citizen. The latter was fined $500,000 in the United States on the basis of illegal dealings. He actually admitted selling and advertising the product and by doing so was found guilty of such software abuse.
This incident with StealthGenie can’t explain the fact that there are other spy companies around and they are still well and running. The question here is for how long they will go on?
As a matter of fact, such spy software provides a very broad surveillance potential and it runs in a stealth mode as well; it is actually the tool that should be used by governments only in cases of defense when it is really necessary but not in cases of domestic spying when personal privacy is invaded.
This is the point of view that seems to gain more and more support of late. Women’s Aid had a survey that showed the rate of spy software use to be quite high; the major user groups were parents and spouses. Taking into consideration the fact that these applications have become broadly available only fairly recently, it is also understandable that there haven’t been any one clear opinion whether they are legal or not on a major scale.
But it is definitely getting clearer now; if you recall StealthGenie recent FBI operation. In accordance with the Assistant Attorney General’s statement the company’s operation was defined as illegal and in even stronger terms, it is a crime. All the similar application cases on that matter have very high probability to be put on the same line in the nearest future.
That is why all spy software companies that offered call recording and listen to surrounding feature have closed it right after StealthGenie case. Taking into consideration that this is the first feature that is supposed to be used solely by government agency and law enforcement, most companies considered it unwise to go on with such risks.
The example of StealthGenie was very demonstrative in many ways and especially for other companies in this business. The government put is quite straight that any attempts of personal privacy invasion, any ads and illegal attempts will have their consequences.