Tuesday, October 7, 2014

StealthGenie CEO Arrested

Federal officials announced the arrest of the maker of a popular smartphone app marketed as a tool for catching cheating spouses by eavesdropping on their calls and tracking their locations — a technology critics have dubbed “stalker apps.”

In the first prosecution of its kind, federal officials said that StealthGenie violated the law by offering the ability to secretly monitor phone calls and other communications in almost real time, something typically legal only for law enforcement. The arrest comes as the market for surveillance software has grown so big that Web sites rank such apps on their price, features and even customer service...

The chief executive of the company that makes StealthGenie, Hammad Akbar, 31, of Lahore, Pakistan, was arrested in Los Angeles on Saturday, according to a news release from the Justice Department...
Court filings suggest that Akbar has contended that any legal issues were limited to the users of SmartGenie, not its maker. “When the customer buys the product, they assume all responsibility,” he wrote in a 2011 e-mail, court filings show. “We do not need to describe the legal issues.

Efforts to reach Akbar’s attorney, based in Los Angeles, were not successful. (more)

FutureWatch - Will he pull the "primarily useful" card from the deck? This is what many audio eavesdropping gadget manufacturers used in the past to evade the law. 

"Hey, its a baby monitor."... that can hear through concrete walls.