Researchers Find Ways to Track and Spy on Mobile Phones, Legally

pic2-46A recent article on CNET reports that researchers have found a way to target a person's mobile phone, obtain its number, locate the phone geographically, track the phone's--and its owners--movements, and ultimately listen to the phone's voicemail messages. But the most shocking aspect of this cyber-spy scenario is that it is completely legal, using databases and protocols that are part of the mobile telecommunications system.

As one researcher described it:

If I want to find Brad Pitt, I find his number using the caller ID database, use Home Location Register access to figure out what provider he has. T-Mobile is vulnerable to voice mail spoofing so I get into his voice mail and listen to his messages.... But I can also have the system tell me the numbers of the callers and I can take those numbers and look them up in the caller ID database and use the Home Location Register system to find their providers and break into their voice mail, and so on.