• How the Electronic Offender-Tracking Solution Technology Works


    Global Positioning Systems (GPS) are increasingly being used to monitor an offender’s location and notify someone if the offender enters an exclusion zone. Satellites track the location of the offender’s GPS tracking device (often secured on an ankle). There are two types of GPS tracking: active and passive. Active tracking is most often used with violent offenders since it provides realtime location of the offender 24 hours a day. With passive tracking, an offender wears a device 24 hours a day but the monitoring official might only receive an offender’s location information once a day when the offender uploads it from home. Passive monitoring is not recommended for use with stalkers and violent offenders. 



    Active monitoring is only effective if an administrator continually monitors the location of offenders, 24/7. In some places, monitoring is done by corrections or local police officers who know the offender and the victim while other communities outsource this function to a vendor that works elsewhere. An electronic monitoring program can set up “exclusion zones” around the victim’s home, work, etc., and an enrolled offender may not enter those geographic areas. If the offender enters those zones, an alert can be immediately sent to the monitor.

    Some systems notify the victim with a pager if the offender enters any exclusion zone. Other systems track the victims realtime location by using GPS on the victims pager device. If the victim is not in the exclusion zone and the offender comes near the victim, the system will typically alert both the monitoring official and the victim. The offender can also be contacted and police can be dispatched.Some agencies use GPS monitoring of offenders before trial as a condition of release from jail. Others use it after an offender violates a restraining order. After a plea or conviction, an offender may be required or voluntarily agree to be electronically monitored as an alternative to staying in jail or prison. Typically offenders pay the monitoring program fee. 

    Benefits and Risks: It is critical to understand that GPS monitoring of offenders is only effective as part of a larger coordinated system. If not enough trained officers can respond quickly when an offender approaches a victim and if courts lack resources to hold offenders accountable, the monitoring devices will not be effective. It is vital that a communitybased advocate explains to the victim how the offender tracking system works and its benefits and risks. If a community offers realtime tracking of victims, it is important to note that while this additional service may offer the victim extra protection, the victim, who has not committed a crime, is tracked 24hours a day. This raises serious safety and privacy risks. It also creates a risk that the offender or offender’s attorney may try to obtain the victim’s location records in an effort to intimidate or harass the victim. For safety, a monitoring agency’s policies should restrict access of a victim location to the fewest staff possible. Any victim who is considering carrying a GPS device must be fully informed of all risks and benefits, provide consent before being tracked, and must be able to withdraw that consent at any time.  

    For example, Concox Electronic Offender-Tracking Solution.The GPS Offender-Tracking bracelets are not just devices worn around ankles. They're part of a complex system for monitoring the movements and activities of pretrial defendants or convicted offenders on probation or parole. The system offers a robust integration of tracking, communication and mapping technologies that enable operators to efficiently track offenders, indoors and out, at varying levels of intensity. The offender tracking solution comprises ankle-worn electronic tracking devices, walkie talkie and the application software, all fully-integrated from device-to-cloud, connected through a secure, wireless network.


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