Technology and Communication
March 25, 2012
University Of Phoenix
Technology and Communication
In today’s world we have progressed far past Benjamin Franklin’s discovery of electricity. We have shaped and molded technology to provide us with less hassle, less work and a more convenient way to communicate. In the world of crime, technological advances have taken us above and beyond as we master to seek the truth through polygraph tests, or the way we link a suspect through DNA samples from a crime scene ; Even the way we have administered technology with the death penalty has advanced far beyond we ever imagined. Technology has been useful to solving many crimes and will continue to advance and evolve as it benefits us to help crime but also makes for easier ways for more criminals to partake in illegal behavior. Weather benefiting us or increasing crime, technology is better assisted when understood; it’s important every officer can understand and prepare, for what the world of technology has to offer, in the criminal justice field, and how we communicate.
It’s no surprise that cell phones, particularly the modern day smartphone, have made it more convenient to interact with other people. It has also made it more convenient to track people through GPS, to get information about crimes through mobile data records, as well as provide a text hotline to help witnesses reveal information they may know about crime. Many states have opened a text hotline for citizens to disclose information about crimes they may feel afraid to come clean with over the phone. Many officers are obtaining personal data records as well when it comes to finding missing children or victims who have been kidnapped.
However to every benefit we find a disadvantage and GPS to many can be considered a violation of personal privacy and the fourth amendment. One District Attorney out of Denver, Colorado, Tom Raynes states “Cell providers can locate every smartphone at any given moment. The question becomes who's privy to that information and under what circumstances…" (Fender, 2012) Now the question upon most cellphone providers is the simple question of whether by signing a contract, are you also signing away your right to privacy? Some people could argue this privacy but I think they fail to see a cellphone company is not going to give your information to just anyone. For one we must remember if you’re doing something illegal chances are your aware of your action and the consequences. At that point if one is on the run for murder, it would only be obvious that for the safety of the public that they be tracked through GPS and there cell phone. “How does GPS work?” one would ask. Well its simple cell phones are constantly communicating with towers even while not in use in a pocket or care. The movement of the device is tracked through triangulation and the signal strength the device puts off to towers. (Fender, 2012) Despite many beliefs that this goes against the fourth amendment, obtaining these GPS records are similar to obtaining a search warrant. More often than not, such warrants are filed under seal, so trying to see how frequently they are used is difficult to make a statistic out of. (Fender, 2012) Colorado reports through the Denver Post Newspaper that this is usually the first step now to obtaining evidence in many cases. Many examples include when children go missing or a suicidal person cannot be found; in such cases a search warrant is always required. One case of a man who robbed a convenient store and the cashier’s iPhone had a quick resolution as the victim and police worked with AT&T to obtain data records. In less than a day the suspect was found and arrested. Such success stories make technology seem like an advantage in the world of crime but it has also made for new crimes and new laws as it advances. For example while the computer aids in many of our daily lives...