Beware of cell phone spyware - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

5/26/10

Beware of cell phone spyware

LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) -

By Tiffany Pelt - email

LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) – Ten minutes alone with your cell phone, and anyone can watch your every move, see all your text messages, listen in on calls, and you'd never even know.

From "How to spy on a cheating spouse" to "checking up on your teen", a simple Google search pulls up several cell phone spy ware programs you can download.

"One person has to consent to the recording there are no phone taps in Texas that are allowed. Federal law makes it a five year felony to tap a phone," said Lubbock attorney Charlie Dunn. As long as you get permission to put the spyware on the cell, you won't end up in a cell. But that doesn't always stop people from secretly spying.

Prices range for the different software, and the more you spend the more you can see.

With the help of KCBD's chief engineer, we tested the cell phone spyware out ourselves. Ten minutes alone with his phone, and the spy ware is downloaded without leaving a trace. In minutes all the text messages, phone calls, photos, emails, everything on his phone was available for us to see.

We could even track his movements and pin point his exact location. "If an expert takes that phone and plugs it into a computer they can find that spyware, but who is going to do that? The bottom line is that it's scary," said Dunn. There is virtually no way the cell phone owner can tell if their phone has been hacked.

Some of the spyware allows you to secretly listen to the phone calls as they happen. One application silently turns on the speaker phone without the owner even using the phone. "Violations of privacy are serious matters that aren't taken lightly. Bottom line is avoid these things, there's no good that can come from it," said Dunn.

There are a few signs that a phone has been hacked, like if your batter life goes quicker than usual, your phone lights up without you using it, or more usage charges show up on your bill. There are also several websites that of offer anti-spyware software you can download onto your smart phone.

Copyright 2010 KCBD. All rights reserved.

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