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How to Spy Legally?

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Spying on someone isn’t easy, rather a very tricky proposition. Watching a television star spying in a web series or show makes you curious about this activity. There is not any specific law defined in the constitution about spying activities. Also, the legal system does not clearly define the legality of spying on someone. 

At any stage of life, you realize the need to spy on someone, you should be aware of what activities you are allowed to perform, and which activities come into the category of prohibited activities.

Conduct a Legal Spying

There are several incidents in our life when we need to spy on someone to reveal the truth. Nowadays, there have been several reasons, and lots of options to spy on your friends, colleagues, relatives, or neighbors. 

Putting hidden cam is one of the most effective and most used ways to spy on others from various years.  There are also different types of other ways to spy on others’ life-like recording audio phone calls, taking access to their phone through apps, etc.

1-Placing hidden cams on your premises

If you want to know what the person does in your absence, you can install a spy cam.

Also Read: How to deal with cybercrime in India?

Setting up a hidden camera in your home to spy on some relative (e.g., a spouse) is an area of law that is still evolving. You are open to set-up a camera to monitor others’ activity if you are the owner of the property, and no audio is recorded. 

2-Location tracking through GPS

Technology has been playing a smart role in helping investigators and spies to accomplish their tasks with much clarity. GPS tracker is one of the best technology that plays a very important role in spying through location tracking. 

In terms of tracking the location of someone through GPS devices, the law is not defined clearly. If you’re placing a GPS tracker in your own vehicle, it is somehow legal. If you want someone to track where the person using your vehicle goes, positioning a GPS tracker to keep track of location is a great way. 

-Positioning GPS device on other vehicles isn’t a good idea, as it can be illegal.

3-Hire a private investigator

Private detectives have been on their duty for a long ago. If you find it hard to investigate others on your own, or you don’t want to do an investigation by yourself, you can let someone else do this task for you. Hiring a private investigator can be a great option for this. Persons in the profession have experience with surveillance, they are also competent enough to take care of privacy laws and other legal issues related to the investigation.

Also Read: How to Become A Lawyer in India: A Complete Guide

-Make it clear that the investigator you hire doesn’t use any illegal method to spy on someone. If somehow the investigator uses illegal means to spy on someone for you, you can be punished by law.

-Give clear instructions to your investigator and take his acceptance in writing.

-As it is about hiring a third person, be clear with all your instructions and permissions you give your private investigator.

4- Collect his information on the public identification

In this world of the internet and social media, every second person has social media account. You can identify habits, behaviors, interests, friend circle, future plans, social status, and a lot more about a person by searching them on the internet. 

Also Read: What is PIL (Public Interest Litigation)?

Also, public information like criminal background, credit reports, and property records can be an intelligent way to spy on a  person.

5- Observing publicly

A person in a public place is very easy to spy on and observe as there is no expectation of privacy in this case. In this case, try to put your surveillance in limited. Usage of another device in a public place in a wrongful manner can be problematic in the view of the law.

Understand what is illegal

1- Don’t misuse the camera, use it to protect personal property

In various cases, spying on people through a hidden camera is not legal for a citizen. Yes! A private individual isn’t authorized to record the behavior of any other person, however, government agencies or a law-enforcement officer might have this right. 

-If it is your private property you are allowed to install a camera to monitor what is going on in your house to secure your property from theft and damage. Placing cameras isn’t considered spying. If you make observations and collect information stealthily then it comes under spy.

Also Read: What is an Employee Bond Agreement?

2- Installing a spy camera, or software on another’s PC is illegal

Using spyware on someone else’s pc or mobile without their consent is illegal. 

-State law restricts unauthorized and international usage of private information stored on phones or computers.

-If you accidentally access such information, or the person whom you’re spying on has accepted to accessing their private communications, the activity can be considered legal.

-Usage of improperly obtained passwords is also not legal. Even guessing someone’s right password and getting into their device is also against the law.

3- Pretexting is illegal

Do not pretend to be someone else to get information about that person. You can’t call a cell phone company, bank, or credit card company pretending to be someone other than yourself.

Protecting yourself from illegal spying

1-Change passwords

If you find someone is spying on you by accessing your phone, e-mail, etc, your first step needs to change all your passwords. Also, make sure newly changed passwords are not similar to your old ones and are very difficult to crack.

-Also, make sure to change the security questions you are using to verify your identity in case your password is lost.

Also Read: How to Distinguish Civil law and Criminal law?

2- Change PC or Phone

While using your phone, if you notice some unexpected behavior. If your phone’s battery drains quickly, you figure out the unexpected decrease in speed and performance of your speed, or some unexplained icons, it means some software running in the background is monitoring your device. 

To ensure your personal information isn’t compromised, the best way is to get a brand new device.

-As a means of precaution, you can reset your device to its default factory settings eliminating any unwanted software which has been installed.

-When your phone is reset, or you have purchased a new phone, don’t leave it unattended.

3- Follow standard safety guidelines from protection against intrusion 

After restoring your phone or purchasing a new one, you need to follow some basic safety guidelines to avoid future intrusion. Some basic points to remember are-

-Use an updated and advanced anti-virus program

-For sensitive communications use encryption software

-Don’t click suspicious links received on emails or messages

-Close your webcam when it’s not in use

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