From time to time we see apps in Cydia that have questionable uses. Copy10, for example, was a jailbreak utility that advertised the ability to spy on a spouse’s phone activity. TrackingCell for iPhone and Android has many of the same features, but advertises slightly less sketchy uses, such as monitoring children, supervising employees, keeping your data safe, and protecting aging parents–though you generally shouldn’t install spyware on someone else’s phone without their express knowledge. Even if the situation isn’t illegal, it’s a great way to violate someone’s trust.
TrackingCell works by installing the program on an Android headset or jailbroken iPhone. After you’ve installed the app from the ModMyi repository on Cydia (or TrackingCell’s website on Android). Open the app; it will provide a prompt to enter your email address and from there you’ll be able to log in to my.trackingcell.com to see the collected data.
What’s TrackingCell capable of? It logs phone calls and record SMS messages, as well as third-party messages from Skype, WhatsApp, iMessage, and Viber. It can also pull video, pictures, and audio files off your phone while you are connected to WiFi. There’s also GPS capability, if you forget that you can use Find My iPhone. The app is designed to be ‘undetectable,’ so you won’t see any notifications or lists in Cydia.
Keep in mind that paranoia doesn’t come cheap. There is a 24 hour free trial, but afterwards you will have to shell out $16.90 a month to $94.80 a year for the service. You may be better off using Apple’s free Find My iPhone utility for tracking your phone, or reading the iPhone yourself, since you’d have to get your hands on it anyway.
Of course, we’re security junkies. If you’re worried that someone’s installed spyware on your phone, it’s easy enough to keep them out. All you need to do is restore your iPhone’s firmware either through iTunes or through RedSn0w. That will keep your nosey parent, child, employer, or spouse out of your business. Afterwards set a password on your phone to keep them from installing more spyware, because restoring your phone is a pain. They’ll know you’ve disabled their spyware, but if they confront you then you’ll know they’ve installed it.
What do you think of TrackingCall? Should employers install spyware on their employee’s phones to “make sure [their] employees are loyal”? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.