Experts Believe Mexico Spent $5 Million on Secretive SMS Tracking Technology
The Mexican government has become known for purchasing high-end surveillance technology. Now, authorities are trying to decide if Mexico has become the first known country to purchase SMS tracking technology.
This latest report comes from Forbes, which claims to have received data indicating Mexico has “taken an unprecedented step in becoming the first-known buyer of surveillance technology that silently spies on calls, text messages and locations of any mobile phone user.”
Mexico reportedly paid $5 million for the technology. The specific SMS tracking in question uses a long-known exploit of global telecommunications networks called Signaling System No. 7 (SS7).
The anonymous source from Forbes cites internal sales information from Israeli tech company Ability Inc. That company reportedly sold its Unlimited Interception System (ULIN) to Mexico.
How Does ULIN Track Phones?
ULIN is one of the world’s most powerful phone tracking technologies. Priced at between $5 million and $20 million, it might also be the world’s most expensive SMS tracking.
In addition to tracking SMS messages, the software enables location tracking, call tracking, and other surveillance features.
The software is also known for being virtually undetectable. And, to make things even scarier, all that’s needed is a phone number.
That’s right: authorities could potentially track your phone simply by using your phone number. The exploit relies on telecom networks, which means that your phone is vulnerable just by being connected to a mobile network.
The exploit relies on a core feature of phones: Signaling System No. 7, or SS7, is a built-in feature that shifts customers between networks when traveling abroad. ULIN interjects itself into this process and can immediately begin monitoring all communication sent and received over the target’s phone.
The Mexican Phone Tracking Scandal Continues to Grow
Mexico has been wrapped up in phone tracking scandals since the beginning of 2017, when journalists discovered that a wide range of Mexican citizens – including activists, journalists, murder victims’ attorneys, and investigators – had been tracked using the Pegasus phone tracking software.
Pegasus is an infamous smartphone tracking system created by the mysterious, Israel-based NSO Group – a company valued at $1 billion.
No Mexican agency has been specifically accused of running the software. However, Mexico erupted with protests after news of Pegasus broke in June.
ULIN, however, is an entirely different issue. It’s possible that Mexico has purchased two major phone tracking platforms over the past few years.
Ultimately, Forbes believes Mexico paid $5.1 million for the ULIN tracking software. It’s unclear, however, who they targeted with the software.
Fortunately for you, SpyStealth is available for much less than $5.1 million. You can download SpyStealth online today to begin tracking smartphones in minutes.