GPS tracking leads to the firing of a New York state labor employee. The case is currently in the state Court of Appeals, and the outcome is being watched closely by many. There are approximately 200,000 NY state employees who could be affected by the decision.
This case has a lot of questions that need answering. The potential outcome could carry with it a significant precedent where GPS tracking is concerned. On the one hand you have a fired state employee arguing invasion of privacy, and on the other side of the coin you have the state arguing that they are acting in the best interests of its taxpayers. As a GPS tracking provider, we are constantly working to wrap our heads around privacy issues, and in consulting with our clients on best practices and policies. There are a few things that jumped out to us when reviewing the facts.
The first issue is that the state placed a GPS tracking device on a privately owned vehicle. You walk a fine line when you attempt to covertly track a vehicle that you don’t own, and this decision could come back to haunt them. Our private investigator clientele struggle with this very scenario day in and day out, and many times you are at the mercy of state, not federal laws. The second issue is that the fired worker was being monitored by the GPS tracking system 24 hours a day, even while on vacation. This was most likely a wireless magnetic tracking device and, if so, could have easily been removed from the vehicle prior to the individual leaving for extended personal time. This is another consideration that may make the state’s case vulnerable. However, given that the individual in question was ultimately found guilty of the charges levied against him, the courts may decide to overlook these facts.
With GPS tracking technology becoming more prevalent, there has been an increase in these cases reaching the courts. However, most of these are criminal, and not civil cases. The impact of this decision cannot be understated. We will be keeping a sharp eye out for more developments.
We have more great articles in our archives on GPS tracking technology. “GPS Tracking News – The Latest Developments in GPS Tracking Technology for Sunday May 5, 2013″