When the target turns the phone on, it’s already too late. Digital spies have discovered the phone’s location and, without hacking the phone itself, can be tracking it from thousands of miles away. Private companies now provide worldwide phone tracking and interception.
In any case, though this used to be a reasonable specialty product, now a bunch of companies based everywhere throughout the world offer this service to law enforcement and intelligence agencies, perhaps including those who may wish to track the U.S. The tracking technique, which exploits vulnerabilities in a mobile information network U.S. representatives have repeatedly tried to get the government to fix, is currently a standard offering throughout the surveillance industry.
Huge numbers of these companies’ worldwide phone tracking products, if not every one of them, rely on issues with SS7, or Signaling System №7, a mobile network and related set of protocols. SS7 is particularly important for data-roaming when a user leaves their provider’s yet still needs calls and SMS to be transmitted over another carrier.
The fundamental problem with SS7 is the network trusts whatever you tell it. Anyone with access to the SS7 network can send SMS, and the system may not check where the best sms tracker is coming from, or whether a legitimate telecoms company sent it.
This leaves space for tracking companies, or, worse, financially-motivated cyber criminals, to take advantage of the system and utilize it for their own aims.
Past media reports focused on many well-established surveillance vendors offering SS7 abilities. In 2014, The Washington Post reported on ‘SkyLock’, a geolocation production from contractual worker Verint. Also, different companies have attempted to break into this space. A year ago, Forbes secured Ability Inc., an Israeli firm offering a global intercept service for some $20 million. As indicated in a recent Cyberscoop report, the company faces financial difficulties,
Through product brochures and descriptions on the web, we can see many more firms now promote worldwide phone tracking products.
Almenta Group, with workplaces in Hong Kong and Bulgaria, promotes a similar product called “Observer” that gives “worldwide geolocation,” according to a blurb for the organization on Milipol’s site. Milipol is a standard military and surveillance trade fair. A brochure for “Observer” demonstrates that only with the target’s mobile phone number, the smartphone’s location can be found and showed on a Google Maps interface.
Wolf Intelligence is a German organization that offers malware for tracking smartphones, jammers, and security-focused smartphones. The company’s brochure mentions a product that can “report the location of a specific mobile phone device anywhere in the world, if within the variety of the nearest antennae.” Wolf was previously engaged in a tracking deal which turned out badly with the Mauritanian government, in which an Italian bodyguard was arrested.
Israeli firm Picsix lists the P6-GEO product. As stated by the company, P6-GEO product gives operational offices the capacity to locate, track and secretly manipulate GSM & UMTS subscribers virtually any place on the planet, including roaming incoming or outgoing.