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Last April, the Washington Post reported that while serving as a U.S. attorney during the Bush administration, Christopher Christie tracked the whereabouts of citizens through their cell phones without warrants. The ACLU obtained these documents from the Justice Department in an ongoing lawsuit over cell phone tracking. While the documents reveal 79 such cases on or after Sept. 12, 2001, they do not specify how many of the applications were made during Christie's tenure.
Documents released by the ACLU have also shown that of the states randomly sampled, New Jersey and Florida used GPS tracking without obtaining probable cause or warrants. Four other states, California, Louisiana, Indiana, Nevada and the District of Columbia reported having obtained GPS data only after showing probable cause.
Technical details aside, your cell phone can be remotely powered on and off without either your consent or your knowledge. This includes any tracking functions, such as GPS or just using normal cell tower ping triangulation, and even features like direct microphone feeds for any ongoing conversations (known as a “roving bug.”)
Of course, this can't be done for any great length of time, as the cell phone battery will need to be recharged eventually, which puts something of a limit on it.
"Someone can simply do a search on the internet, if they know the name, and type of camera, and find that camera and connect directly to it," said ethical hacker Michael Gregg. He found thousands of Web sites in a few seconds broadcasting live web cam feeds. "So they could be watching you, and you don't even realize it," he said.