Bounty hunters and stalkers are able to track you in realtime by lying to your phone company and pretending to be cops

Early in January, Motherboard's Joseph Cox broke a blockbuster story about how America's mobile carriers sold access to their customers' realtime location data to many shady marketing brokers, who then quietly slipped that data to bounty hunters and other unsavory characters -- a practice that they'd been caught in before and had falsely promised to end. Read the rest

Man outwits a creepy car that chases him up and down a street

What do you do if you're walking alone on a lonely dark street and a car starts chasing you? This man is minding his own business when a car stops alongside him. It's not clear what the passenger of the car says or does to make this guy scared, but he runs in the opposite direction. The car then chases him by driving in reverse, so the guy stops in his tracks, reverses his direction again while crossing the street diagonally.

At this point another car comes by, and the man again changes his direction to run alongside it, making it impossible for the stalker to continue without making an obvious scene. This guy was both smart and lucky! Read the rest

Rob a bank in an effort to pitch woo at Taylor Swift and you're gonna have a bad day.

A Connecticut man tried to tell Taylor Swift that You Belong With Me by robbing a bank.

Call It What You Want, but according to the Associated Press, Rhode Island police believe that it was in bank robber Bruce Rowley's Wildest Dreams to propose to Swift, showing his devotion by committing a federal crime.

After robbing a bank, Rowley's End Game was to head over to Swift's place in his Getaway Car and throw his ill-gotten gains over the fence of her Rhode Island home to impress her.

You should know that the total sum of Rowley's score amount it around $1,6o0: a princely bounty that, as any love-starved misogynist will tell you, is guaranteed to attract the affections of any woman, no matter she is or how much of a loon you might be.

Rowley's belief in the fact that Two is Better Than One wasn't long lived, however. After figuring out Rowley's plan, cops from Rhode Island chased him all the way to Connecticut and placed him under arrest. I'm betting that Rowley falsely believed that by crossing the state line, he'd be able to evade the police and wind up Safe and Sound. But the Highway Don't Care. Love Story or not, the cops got their man.

So yeah, if you're thinking of pulling some creepy stalker bullshit, maybe don't.

Image: Eva Rinaldi - Flickr, CC BY-SA 2.0, Link Read the rest

What it's like to be spied on by Android stalkerware marketed to suspicious spouses

For $170, Motherboard's Joseph Cox bought SpyPhone Android Rec Pro, an Android app that you have to sideload on your target's phone (the software's manufacturer sells passcode-defeating apps that help you do this); once it's loaded, you activate it with an SMS and then you can covertly operate the phone's mic, steal its photos, and track its location. Read the rest

Mobile recharging station operators in India sell tens of thousands of women's phone numbers to stalkers

Tens of thousands of women in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh have complained to police about harassing phone calls from creepy men who bought their phone numbers from the operators of mobile phone recharging stations; they say the operators sneakily captured their phone numbers and sold them off to the stalkers. Read the rest

Women who stalk women

Charlotte Shane reports on women-on-woman harassment cases and their relationship to the false intimacy of the internet. Read the rest

Surveillance and stalkers: how the Internet supercharges gendered violence

85% of domestic violence shelters work with women who have been GPS-tracked by their abusers; 75% have clients who were attacked with hidden mobile surveillance apps; cops routinely steal and share nude selfies from the phones of women pulled over in traffic stops, and NSA spies used agency's massive, illegal surveillance apparatus to stalk women they were sexually attracted to, a practice that was dubbed "LOVEINT." Read the rest