Technology Used To Track Criminals

Technology has made staying hidden more difficult for fugitives over the years. While background checks and international crime databases are two powerful tools used to catch criminals, newer technologies have revolutionized efforts to put fugitives behind bars. Here is a look at some of the top technological tools used for tracking criminals today.


The Internet is a vast collection of sites where footprints of criminals can be found by law enforcement. Just like other people, many criminals use social networking sites to keep in touch with friends, family and others. Police can use these sites in a variety of ways. For example, police can plan investigations based on information and pictures posted by criminals and their associates. Information on employment, residence and travel can also be found with online tools. By creating fake social media profiles, police can also befriend criminals to gain access to inside information that can lead to a successful arrest.


Smartphones constantly transmit their location to cell phone towers. While the average person cannot track other people by their phones, police can do so with special tools. The fact that courts have upheld the legality of this tactic has made cell phone location a common option for tracking the movements of criminals. At more than 200 U.S. police departments, police routinely employ cell phone tracking to catch criminals, including cell phone thieves, drug dealers and others. Special tools that mimic cell phone towers can also be used to access cell phones and listen in on criminals through their phone microphones.

Vehicle GPS Units 

Many modern vehicles contain GPS units by default, including those equipped with OnStar. For most people, GPS is a handy tool for navigation and a powerful safety measure in case of accidents. For law enforcement agencies, GPS units enable tracking of fugitives for faster apprehension. Furthermore, the use of these systems improves public safety be reducing the need for high-speed chases on roads and highways. Instead, police can wait for criminals to stop before going in for an arrest. Of course, the use of vehicle GPS units for tracking is sometimes impractical during sudden pursuits. In such situations, other tracking devices may be deployed.

Tracking Devices 

Police are increasingly using special devices to track criminals during vehicle pursuits. In the past, placing a tracking device on a criminal's vehicle required waiting until the vehicle stopped. Now, some police agencies have sticky propelled GPS units that officers can shoot from the front of their vehicles onto the vehicles of criminals they are actively pursuing. Once the GPS unit has adhered to the suspect's vehicle, police can start tracking the vehicle from their headquarters. Police can then speed toward the criminal's location as soon as the tracked vehicle stops.

Technology continues to improve safety and increase convenience in daily life. With its increasing applications in law enforcement, technology also benefits the public by helping to keep criminals off the streets. As technology continues to grow, police will doubtlessly have even more tools at their disposal for locating and catching fugitives.

Author bio:
Kyle Carter is an avid blogger and professional bail bondsman with C&K OKC Bail Bonds in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Kyle is passionate about sharing information online through his blogs, on youtube, and provides local bail bonds services in OKC to the local community.
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