BROWNSVILLE, Texas (ValleyCentral) — AirTags can be used for tracking luggage, wallets, or even pets, but some people are using them for tracking people.
Law enforcement officials are making sure people know the legal repercussions of tracking people using devices.
“Yes, you can use your tracking device to find your keys, find your backpack, find your dog find, you know, but when you put it like that to somebody else to track somebody else’s movement, that’s when it becomes illegal,” said Martin Sandoval, the public information officer for Brownsville Police.
The devices are easy to purchase and easy to hide.
A man in Cameron County was arrested and charged for tracking his child’s mother this week, landing him in the Cameron County jail.
Cameron County District Attorney, Luis V. Saenz, said Penal Code 16.06, the unlawful installation of tracking device, has repercussions.
“The immediate repercussions are you will be arrested, you will be fingerprinted and booked have to post bond. And you know, the DA will charge you with the case. And you will have to show up in court and answer the charges,” said Saenz.
The AirTag device is not new to the market, as it launched in April 2021.
Although the device is popular and affordable, Saenz said there are other devices used that some people may not immediately notice.
“You know, it’s very simple to do. And it’s very difficult to detect. They’re, they’re camouflaged. I mean, they’re designed and marketed in such a way that you can be looking at it without realizing that you’re looking at a tracking device,” he said.
He explained that tracking device technology is expected to evolve over time.
“If you have an AirTag today, by next year, a couple of months, you’re going to make it even better. So, they’re going to be making them better, as far as reception wise better as far as camouflaging,” Saenz said.
District Attorney Saenz and Officer Martin Sandoval both agree that everyone should understand the serious consequences using tracking devices in an illegal way can have.
“Many people out there are going to see this, they’re going to realize that yes, it is against the law, hopefully, it is going to deter them from doing it. And the people that have actually experienced it for them to come forward and actually file a report,” said Sandoval.