U.S. government able to track mobile phones without involving operators
November 19, 2008 — 2:44pm ET By Paul Mah
New documents made available under a Freedom of Information Act request brought additional information pertaining to the use of triggerfish technology to the foreground. Triggerfish is also known as cell-site simulators or digital analyzers. By posing as a cell tower, it is possible to use it to trick nearby phones into transmitting their serial numbers and other data, which can be used to triangulate the location of mobile phones. While earlier understanding of this technology assumes the cooperation of mobile phone operators, one of the uncovered documents explicitly noted that it can be deployed without having to "involve the cell phone provider."