Cell Phone Spying Nightmare: 'You're Never the Same'
With software, people can track your private life through your cell phone.
March 8, 2010— -- Technology makes it easier to connect with the people in your life, but it can also enable others to connect to you without your knowledge.
People can learn all about your private life through your cell phone, and one woman said she was stalked for three years because of it. Susan, who asked that her real name be kept private because of worry over her safety, said her ex-boyfriend tormented her using only her cell phone to do it.
"He knew where I was all the time," Susan said. "If I was at dinner somewhere. He would text me and ask me how dinner was. I had no idea how he knew where I was."
Most people know that the GPS in a cell phone can track your every move, but that's just the beginning. Widely available software that can be installed on almost any cell phone can track not just your whereabouts but also your private conversations and personal information.
"I thought I was going crazy," Susan said. "It's just unnerving knowing that somebody 24/7 knows where you're at, what you're talking about, what's going on, everything about you."
At the time, Susan didn't know that her ex-boyfriend installed spying software on her phone when she wasn't looking. Once installed, he could be anywhere -- even in a different state -- and follow her every move.
But what was worse, it didn't just track her whereabouts. He could listen in on her phone calls, read her text messages and turn her personal cell phone into a bugging device. From anywhere, he could activate her speaker phone and listen to everything she was doing.
"He would text me, 'How was dinner? Was the date good?'" she recalled.
Susan's ex-boyfriend would also show up places where she was. She feared for her life and called the police, who put her in protective custody. When her ex-boyfriend violated the restraining order, he was put in jail on felony stalking charges.
"He had every intention of killing me," she said. "Within 20 minutes of getting out of jail, he was outside my hotel room."
Security expert Robert Siciliano says he gets countless e-mails from victims of cell phone spying.
"When somebody remotely activates your phone, you're not going to know it and they can use that phone to monitor the conversations in the room you're in," he said. "Your phone could be sitting next to you while you are watching TV, and somebody can actually log into your phone and can actually watch what you are watching on television."
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