Emerging forms of covert surveillance using GPS-enabled devices

Roba Abbas, Katina Michael, M. G. Michael, Anas Aloudat

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


This case presents the possibility that commercial mobile tracking and monitoring solutions will become widely adopted for the practice of non-traditional covert surveillance within a community setting, resulting in community members engaging in the covert observation of family, friends, or acquaintances. This case investigates five stakeholder relationships using scenarios to demonstrate the potential socioethical implications that tracking and monitoring will have on society. The five stakeholder types explored in this case include: (i) husband-wife (partner-partner), (ii) parent-child, (iii) employer-employee, (iv) friend-friend, and (v) stranger-stranger. Mobile technologies like mobile camera phones, global positioning system data loggers, spatial street databases, radio-frequency identification, and other pervasive computing can be used to gather real-time, detailed evidence for or against a given position in a given context. Limited laws and ethical guidelines exist for members of the community to follow when it comes to what is permitted when using unobtrusive technologies to capture multimedia and other data (e.g., longitude and latitude waypoints) that can be electronically chronicled. In this case, the evident risks associated with such practices are presented and explored.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationCases on Emerging Information Technology Research and Applications
PublisherIGI Global
Number of pages19
ISBN (Electronic)9781466636200
ISBN (Print)146663619X, 9781466636194
StatePublished - Mar 31 2013
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science(all)
  • Engineering(all)


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