The Russian police have come to another great decision – they decided to mount equipment enabling them to read data on smartphones of passengers while those are waiting for subway trains.
According to the head of police for Moscow’s subway system, the equipment would be helpful in finding stolen mobile devices. In the interview, Mr. Mokhov explained that the devices used in the equipment have a range of about 5 meters and are able to read SIM cards. After accessing SIM card, the devices will check to see if it is on a list of stolen phones, and if it is the system would automatically notify the police. In addition, the time and place of the alert will be matched to closed-circuit TV in subway stations so that the suspect can be filmed and his arrest would be much easier.
The problem is that the media reports also quoted experts who pointed out that such equipment can be used more widely to follow all subway passengers without exception. In response, Mr. Mokhov claimed that it was against the law to track anybody without permission from the authorities. Unfortunately, there was no law against tracking the property of a company, such as a SIM card.