There is no doubt that we often take for granted the risks involved with the latest and greatest technological advancements we enjoy, specifically in the realm of personal devices.
Sure, it is a fantastic advantage to carry around a cell phone capable of telling us exactly where we are at any given time, especially on a planet as vast as our own. Not to mention that, with Wikipedia, we are able to know virtually anything in just a matter of a few seconds of thumb-work.
Heck, just yesterday I ordered a smoked chicken plate from a BBQ restaurant using only my smartphone. And it was delicious.
But we must remember that there is a downside to all of this rampant connectivity. Namely, that all of this information is being stored somewhere, and that this storage isn’t always the most private.
Take one mafia hitman, for example, who learned this lesson the hard way.
A British runner, cyclist, and mob hitman has been convicted for the murders of two rival gangsters, in part, because of his GPS watch. Mark “Iceman” Fellows, 39, was found guilty by a jury at Liverpool Crown Court of killing organized crime leader Paul “Mr. Big” Massey and his associate John Kinsella, 55 and 53 at the time of their deaths. Massey and Kinsella were also career criminals, part of a gang scene near Manchester, England, with a reputation known across Europe, according to the Manchester Evening News.
Though police already suspected Fellows in Kinsella’s death, it was his Garmin Forerunner that linked him to Massey’s unsolved 2015 murder. While detectives were investigating Fellows, they came across a photo of the suspect wearing his Garmin Forerunner during 2015’s Great Manchester 10K (he ran 47:17, pictured above) two months before the murder of Massey that July. Detectives then located the device at Fellows’s home and checked its GPS data for files that could link him to Massey.
This is far from the first time that this sort of information has uncovered secrets, either.
A company called Strava had earlier released a “heat map” of their products’ usage which publicly revealed a number of secret military installations where personnel were wearing their devices.
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