“Stalker apps” face stricter legislations

KIMT News 3 – It may be a convenient way to locate your friends but it’s also a tool some fear can invade your privacy.

US Senator Al Franken is spear-heading a hearing to help put an end to stalker apps.

They’re described as applications that help you locate other smart phone users through GPS.

By simply typing in a phone number, users can find out your exact location without your permission.

The proposed bill would make it so both parties would have to give consent to the search.

“We really talk about how technology can be used for both good and evil. So many people that we work with feel safer because they have their cell phones and they know that 911 is a phone call away, but with all forms of technology with every good use, there’s also the bad use,” said Mary Ingham, Executive Director with Crisis Intervention Services.

The most recent study by the Department of Justice estimates that more than 25,000 american adults are the victim of GPS stalking annually.

“10 years ago, we used to talk to people about when you go to bars, watch your drink. Make sure someone doesn’t slip anything in there. Same with your phone, watch your phone make sure someone doesn’t download an app on your phone that you don’t know about,” said Ingham.

The proposed bill will also make it so companies collecting this information would have to disclose the information for the public.

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