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Tracking

Community Veteran
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Registered: 30-08-2007

Tracking

On a TV programme this morning, the victim of the theft of his laptop had tracker software installed, the thieves were caught and prosecuted by use of the tracker. the built in webcam was also triggered remotely taking photo's of the thieves as if more evidence were necessary.
Anyone here use this sort of device, or any comments.
From a very brief view of the victims laptop screen this is the one he seemed to be using: http://preyproject.com/
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Re: Tracking

Yes have Prey installed on both laptops and desktops PC's.
Tested it by ‘reporting one missing’, then turned on the “missing laptop”, not only saw an image of myself from the built in camera, but a screen image was displayed at the same time. The ‘missing laptop’ showed no sign of being tracked. (Then reported it ‘found’))
There is a version of Prey available for Smartphone’s.
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Community Veteran
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Re: Tracking

So how does it track laptops that don't have GPS built in?
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itsme
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Re: Tracking

Google
I use BTFON hotspots a lot and it's amazing how spot on the location is.
Community Veteran
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Re: Tracking

It’s unlikely the GPS would work indoors.
Tracking is also by means of the “new user”, photographs from webcam, websites visited, (facebook profile is a classic tracking method). Data, IP address assigned by ISP, (then obtaining the physical address from the ISP). Assume even PN keep records of what IP address is assigned and when.
itsme
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Re: Tracking

Quote from: journeys
IP address assigned by ISP, (then obtaining the physical address from the ISP). Assume even PN keep records of what IP address is assigned and when.

That require a court order
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Re: Tracking

Apple iPads & iPhones have an App which will trace a missing device using its GPS and 3G coordinates.
You can even remotely 'kill' the device to prevent the thief gaining data off it!
Geoff,
York.
itsme
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Re: Tracking

Do people ever read? If you followed the link in the OP and scroll down the page you would see.
Quote
Prey uses either the device's GPS or the nearest WiFi hotspots to triangulate and grab a fix on its location. It's shockingly accurate.

and as far as I am aware Google have the main database of WiFi hotspots
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Re: Tracking

Quote from: itsme
and as far as I am aware Google have the main database of WiFi hotspots

Which they gathered illegally and were supposed to delete weren't they?
I can't help but wonder how wifi tracking would work anyway since this would require most wireless NICs to disconnect from the current network and then perform a scan before reconnecting. While this is no doubt possible it could still give the game away that someone is being tracked. That or it would need a second wireless NIC to do the scanning?
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itsme
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Re: Tracking

Collecting the location of WiFi spots, SSID names and MAC addresses is not illegal what was was the collecting some of the payload
itsme
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Re: Tracking

Quote from: Sprite
I can't help but wonder how wifi tracking would work anyway since this would require most wireless NICs to disconnect from the current network and then perform a scan before reconnecting. While this is no doubt possible it could still give the game away that someone is being tracked. That or it would need a second wireless NIC to do the scanning?

SSIDs and MAC addresses. I'm out about through work all the time and I use BTFON hotspots and Google Maps on my android phone and selecting My location put me within 50m on the map.
Razer
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Re: Tracking

Quote from: Sprite
While this is no doubt possible it could still give the game away that someone is being tracked. That or it would need a second wireless NIC to do the scanning?

At the risk of making a sweeping generalisation, I'd still bet that the average thief isn't so tech savvy to know about these things. They are largely magpies, too busy entranced by shiny things.
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Re: Tracking

Quote from: Sprite
I can't help but wonder how wifi tracking would work anyway since this would require most wireless NICs to disconnect from the current network and then perform a scan before reconnecting. While this is no doubt possible it could still give the game away that someone is being tracked. That or it would need a second wireless NIC to do the scanning?

No, any wi-fi enabled device can 'see' other networks even if connected to a particular one (just try running inssider (PC) or wi-fi analyzer (Android) while connected to a network
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Community Veteran
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Re: Tracking

Oh Ok, I didn't realise that - whenever I've done a scan via NetStumbler it's always forced me to disconnect so I thought this was a wifi card limitation!
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Community Veteran
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Re: Tracking

Maybe it depends on the particular hardware or drivers then?  On my office Windows XP machine (with no additional  scanning software), for example, I can 'View Available Wireless Networks' while connected to the office network (though this gives very limited information - only the SSID and signal strength but I'd expect the wi-fi adapter is capable of seeing the other info such as MAC address etc.)
Call me 'w23'
At any given moment in the universe many things happen. Coincidence is a matter of how close these events are in space, time and relationship.
Opinions expressed in forum posts are those of the poster, others may have different views.