Pitfalls to Avoid When Using GPS Tracking

National Police Training
June 10, 2013 — 1,741 views  
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The Global Positioning System (GPS) tracking devices should not be confused with the GPS that is found in cars. The latter is a navigation system, which ensures that you find a correct route to your destination. A GPS tracking device is used to track a vehicle, person, or item in real-time as it moves from one location to another.

A GPS tracking device logs the position of an item or person over time. So, investigators can track the item or person’s location over a set period of time. The system works by using the Earth satellites to triangulate the position of the item in question.

Some Facts about GPS Tracking

GPS tracking devices vary in their accuracy because they may use different ways to process the information they receive. But good quality GPS trackers can triangulate a location with astonishing accuracy. There are two basic types of GPS trackers. Loggers log the information about a device’s location in their internal storage. This information can later be retrieved from the device. Real-time trackers transmit their location data in real-time to other devices.

Tracking a person or a vehicle is a covert operation. So, GPS trackers must be hidden carefully so that they are not discovered. Finding the right location to place the device depends on many factors such as the type of car and the person who drives it.

Using a GPS tracking device has many advantages. The most important advantage is reduction in cost. Previously it took a great deal of resources to covertly track a person or vehicle. Now, a simple device can be used to locate a person or car within 5 to 15 feet.

A common concern for many people is whether tracking someone through GPS is illegal. GPS tracking laws differ from one state to another. However, private investigators are well aware of these laws and it is their responsibility to adhere to them at all times.

Avoiding Pitfalls

Correctly using a GPS tracking device will ensure that it yields the best results. First, you must make sure that the GPS tracker is turned on and is working properly, check whether it is sending and receiving signals and logging locations. Ensure that the tracker is receiving signals from satellites. The wires on the device may be delicate, so make sure that they are all in place.

Next, place the device in a conveniently accessible but hidden location. Depending on the car, the best location may be the undercarriage or the rear hatch. Ensure that you do not place the tracker too far under the car because this would interfere with the receipt and transmission of signals from satellites. Finally, after installation, check whether you are receiving signals from the device and whether the car’s location is correct.

Using a GPS tracking device has many advantages over regular investigative methods. Real-time trackers can send reports of a vehicle’s location every few minutes or seconds. Hourly reports can be generated so that investigators can constantly stay up-to-date. Data can even be transmitted to your computer or smartphone so you will always know the location of a vehicle.

In short, GPS tracking devices provide efficient methods of tracking available today. Service providers have different packages depending on whom or what you are tracking. So, you can ensure that your investigations will not arouse your subject’s suspicion. Just make sure that you avoid the common pitfalls in order to obtain the most accurate data.

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