Feeds

Verizon unveils offspring surveillance service

Don't trust your kids? Track 'em down with Family Locator

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

Verizon Wireless had added a new service that puts a 21st century spin on Orwell's Big Brother, ushering in a brave new world of surveillance monitored by Big Mother and Big Father.

The service, entitled Family Locator and available to subscribers on Verizon's Family SharePlan for an extra $9.99 per month, enables helicopter moms and dads to keep close tabs on junior and sissy's whereabouts by tapping the location services of those untrusted kids' Verizon handsets.

"Peace of mind is right at your fingertips," says Verizon's marketing blurb for Family Locator – but we can say with a strong degree of certainty that the promised peace of mind doesn't extend to children whose every move is being tracked and displayed on their parents' PC or handset.

And not only are family members' locations tracked on an "interactive map" in a browser or smartphone app. Their comings and goings can be tracked as well, with kid-tracking parents receiving alerts when their kids – or, for that matter, their mates – stray from a user-defined radius.

Or, as Verizon puts it, "Arrival and Departure Updates send location messages when the person carrying the Locatee cell phone arrives or departs from a Location that you specify." Your Reg reporter has called his daughters many things over the years, but "Locatee" is a new one for him.

Verizon Family Locator: 'Keep an Eye on Your Teenage Driver'

A Verizon video provides more details of the doting helicopter parent's new intelligence agent

Do you have a teenage driver in your family? Family Locator can betray their driving habits, as well, letting parents know not only where they are, but how fast they're driving – and it allows said parent to message them, telling them, for example, to slow the hell down.

Should a parent or child want to drive to the Location of a Locatee, and if they subscribe to Verizon's VZ Navigator – a "fully loaded next generation GPS" – they can obtain turn-by-turn directions to track them down.

Family Locator also allows its users to schedule check-ins at specific times of the day, notifying a parent, for example, if their li'l princess did indeed arrive at the library promptly at 4pm as she promised she would.

"With Family Locator," Verizon writes, "you'll never lose sight of who is most important to you," whether your target is a daughter whom you've warned not to ever visit that school chum's house, a son whom you've ordered not to stand on that street corner, or even a wandering spouse whom you've begged to never visit that ex-honey ever, ever again.

Of course, phones can be turned off – but woe betide the Locatee who doesn't have a good excuse as to why they attempted to escape from the ever-watchful eye of Family Locator. ®

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

More from The Register

next story
6 Obvious Reasons Why Facebook Will Ban This Article (Thank God)
Clampdown on clickbait ... and El Reg is OK with this
So, Apple won't sell cheap kit? Prepare the iOS garden wall WRECKING BALL
It can throw the low cost race if it looks to the cloud
EE fails to apologise for HUGE T-Mobile outage that hit Brits on Friday
Customer: 'Please change your name to occasionally somewhere'
Time Warner Cable customers SQUEAL as US network goes offline
A rude awakening: North Americans greeted with outage drama
We need less U.S. in our WWW – Euro digital chief Steelie Neelie
EC moves to shift status quo at Internet Governance Forum
BT customers face broadband and landline price hikes
Poor punters won't be affected, telecoms giant claims
prev story

Whitepapers

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup
IT departments are embracing cloud backup, but there’s a lot you need to know before choosing a service provider. Learn all the critical things you need to know.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Backing up Big Data
Solving backup challenges and “protect everything from everywhere,” as we move into the era of big data management and the adoption of BYOD.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?