Our digital world is tracking all of us in ways we cannot imagine, understand, and, least of all, control.
But there is one technology disruptor where our digital privacy and physical safety are poised for a head-on collision.
GPS trackers have been in use for many years, explains Scott Schober, CEO of Berkeley Varitronics Systems (BVS).
“I know because my company has built many wireless security devices for prisons, wireless safety devices for railways, and wireless test devices for EV charger installations.”
“We’ve also sold many GPS tracker detectors to law enforcement and private investigators but a new breed of miniature, anonymous, and disposable tracker has appeared.”
Personal Bluetooth trackers have empowered all of us to find our keys or a lost pet – but these same trackers also have armed criminals with a way to stalk, steal and threaten anyone’s privacy and safety.
Tiny BLE (Bluetooth Low Energy) trackers are being used worldwide. Jealous partners, stalkers, and a variety of criminals are deploying these trackers at an alarming rate to carry out their illegal acts with little to no risk of getting caught.
How is this possible?
To keep thieves in the dark, tracker manufacturers build in an artificial notification delay.
This way, a bicycle thief, for instance, won’t know that they’ve stolen a bike containing a hidden tracker before the owner realizes it’s gone, giving victims valuable time to notify authorities or retrieve the lost or stolen item before the criminal can discover and discard that hidden tracker.
BLE Personal Tracker Detection
However, personal BLE trackers (including the most popular, Apple’s AirTag®) have raised issues involving stalking and tracking of people, vehicle theft, and packages containing illegal items. Low-cost personal trackers are operated by tech companies making the trackers difficult for security teams to detect and locate in a timely manner.
Unfortunately, this same delay can also be exploited by stalkers and thieves to track people and their belongings long before the victims are notified. These warning notifications typically appear anywhere between 8 to 24 hours after the tracker has already been hidden, and some reports suggest up to 3 days later.
This delayed warning can lead to all kinds of crimes and victimizations.
To make matters worse, tags with audible chimes are being disabled and re-sold as ‘silent tags’ so victims cannot hear and locate hidden trackers. So if you don’t own a smartphone or don’t have it on you, you have no way of knowing you are being tracked.
And the over 2.7 billion Android users worldwide cannot receive any stalking notifications unless they install and launch a specific app that has to run in the background all the time. It’s almost like the tags are stacked against us.
(Learn how to stop #AirTagStalking by detecting hidden BLE (BlueSleuth Low Energy) tags made by Apple, Samsung, Tile, and more. Courtesy of Berkeley Varitronics Systems, Inc. and YouTube. Posted on 764 views Jan 31, 2023.)
What We Can Do
“In my company’s 50 years of business, we’ve developed, built, and shipped thousands of wireless security products for big customers with deep pockets all from our headquarters in Metuchen, New Jersey,” added Schober.
“We have (2) fully automated CNC machines and expert machinists in our metal shop and have always designed and built all of our products in the USA.“
“We intend to continue that tradition, but this product is different because it’s the most affordable detector we’ve ever created. It’s designed for anyone that values their privacy and security.”
This product is called BlueSleuth-Lite and it immediately detects and notifies the user of all nearby personal trackers.
This new concept is based upon an existing successful product: BlueSleuth bluetooth skimmer locators sold to law enforcement task forces, ATM security teams, Weights and Measures inspectors, and owners/managers operating fuel stations plagued by hidden Bluetooth card skimmers.
The following news segment video features BlueSleuth and highlights Berkeley Varitronics Systems‘ goal to make the world safer and more secure for everyone.
(NBC’s KXAN out of Austin, TX, reports on a tool to help combat card skimmers found in multiple Texas gas station pumps. BlueSleuth™ Bluetooth skimmer locator is a handheld receiver that detects and tracks the location of covert and illegal bluetooth card skimmers and the criminals that connect to them. Courtesy of KXAN, Berkeley Varitronics Systems, and YouTube.)
To achieve a full year of battery life, personal trackers send out infrequent BLE pings lasting only milliseconds making them impossible to detect without advanced algorithms, calibrated antennas, and dedicated receivers.
BVS has taken years of R&D already poured into existing solutions and miniaturized them into an affordable, palm-sized solution that can attach to any keyring.
BlueSleuth-Lite is pocket-sized and is small enough to fit in your palm and even attach to a keyring so it’s always available.
The unit features charging through both USB-Mini and an advanced Qi wireless charging system for convenience (charging pad included). An internal Lithium-Ion battery holds enough charge to operate for a full day.
Operation is simple – a single two-way rocker/push button switch allows navigation through all nearby BLE tags and devices, thresholds, and alert settings, including vibrating alerts.
This allows users to keep BlueSleuth-Lite in their pocket, automobile, home, or wherever while checking for suspicious BLE trackers.
All major BLE trackers (AirTag, Tile, Galaxy Smart Tags, PebbleBee, Chipolo, etc.) are immediately detected and displayed by name and icon, making hidden ones easy to locate and identify.
Since BlueSleuth-Lite can detect all BLE devices, the user can also choose to search for any BLE device, including earbuds, smartwatches, phones, tablets, PCs, and much more, but BLE trackers always have priority.
If multiple trackers are detected, they are listed according to signal strength (the best indicator of proximity) so that the user may drill down on a specific tag for more information.
Advanced scanning algorithms ensure that only BLE tags are detected and displayed and threshold settings allow users to narrow the scanning radius in areas where there is a lot of BLE activity.
Rather than spending valuable time and money on patents and lawyers, Berkeley Varitronics Systems made the decision to just build the solution and offer it directly to the customers that need it the most.
But to enter this consumer market and prepare for mass production in a way they’ve never had to think about before, Berkeley Varitronics Systems is relying heavily upon the Kickstarter community for your feedback and funding of this prototype and subsequent production runs.
The funding goal is set to cover R&D costs and not the cost of goods sold unless pledges exceed the goal.
To learn more, please go to https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1458746827, or visit Berkeley Varitronics Systems at www.bvsystems.com.
Cellbusters Takes Platinum in 2022 ‘ASTORS’ Homeland Security Awards Program
American Security Today’s Annual ‘ASTORS’ Awards is the preeminent U.S. Homeland Security Awards Program, and now entering it’s Eighth Year, continues to recognize industry leaders of Physical and Border Security, Cybersecurity, Emergency Preparedness – Management and Response, Law Enforcement, First Responders, as well as federal, state and municipal government agencies in the acknowledgment of their outstanding efforts to Keep our Nation Secure.
Best Cell Phone Detection Solution
The Zone Protector™ from Cellbusters provides maximum protection for your environment by continuously scanning for cell phone and user-selectable RF transmissions, and is far more sophisticated than a cell phone detector.
Comparable to a spectrum analyzer, the Zone Protector™ has the ability to scan user-definable frequency ranges along with the ability to alert, notify, control a third party device, or simply log as soon as it detects relevant transmission activity.
Precise frequency filtering technology, managed and controlled by a 32-bit microprocessor, enables the Zone Protector™ to deliver accurate detection with virtually zero false positives.
Once cellular or appropriate RF activity is detected, the Zone Protector™ can be set to activate a choice of alerting options or to silently log all detected activity.
Additionally, Cellbusters Zone Protector has now been updated to detect 5G phones, proving a leading edge in the market, and protects investment in this technology for years to come.
(See a quick overview of the Zone Protector and the Zone Manger, both cell phone detection technology from Cellbusters. Courtesy of Cellbusters and YouTube.)
*Cellbusters has officially been recognized as an ‘ASTORS’ Awards Champion in all Seven ‘ASTORS’ Awards Programs. Thank you for your continued confidence in American Security Today!
Homeland Security remains at the forefront of our national conversation as we experience an immigration crisis along our southern border and crime rates that are dramatically higher than before the Pandemic across the United States.
These challenges have become a national priority with an influx of investments in innovative new technologies and systems.
Enter American Security Today, the #1 publication and media platform in the Government Security and Homeland Security fields, with a circulation of over 75,000 readers and many tens of thousands more who visit our AST website at www.americansecuritytoday.com each month.
The pinnacle of the Annual ‘ASTORS’ Awards Program is the Annual ‘ASTORS’ Awards Ceremony Luncheon Banquet, an exclusive, full-course plated meal event, in the heart of New York City.
This year’s exclusive sold-out ‘ASTORS’ luncheon featured representatives of law enforcement, public safety, and industry leaders who came together to honor the selfless service of those who stand on the front lines, and those who stand beside them – providing the capabilities and technologies to create a safer world for generations to come.
This year marks the 20th anniversary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), which came out in force, to discuss comprehensive collaborations between private and public sectors that have led to the development of intelligence and technologies which serve to protect our nation.
The continually evolving ‘ASTORS’ Awards Program emphasized the trail of Accomplished Women in Leadership in 2022, as well as the Significance and Positive Impact of Advancing Diversity and Inclusion in our Next Generation of Government and Industry Leaders.
The keynote address was provided by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Office of Field Operations (OFO) Deputy Executive Assistant Commissioner (DEAC) Diane Sabatino, who described the changes to CBP through the tragedy of 9/11 and the relentless commitment to its mission and ongoing investment in the latest technologies and innovations to protect our borders and Homeland.
The resounding theme of the DEAC’s remarks was her pride in the women and men of the CBP and their families who support them.
AST was also joined by Legendary Police Commissioner William Bratton, who spoke, as always, about his love for the City of New York, the Profession of law enforcement to which he has dedicated his life, and for which he continues to drive thought leadership and innovation.
New York City Police Department (NYPD) Chief of Department Kenneth Corey, came out to address Luncheon attendees and shared some of his experiences and the changes in policing he’s witnessed over his more than three decades of service.
FDNY Chief Joseph Jardin honored the men and women of the FDNY, not only those who currently serve but all of those who have selflessly served, with special recognition of those lost on 9/11.
Chief Jardin spoke about the continuing health battle of many following 9/11 with cancer and respiratory disease, yet now knowing the full consequences, would not have made a different decision to respond.
As Chief Jardin noted, mission-driven service is in the lifeblood of every firefighter, volunteer and sworn and has been so throughout the history of the Fire Service.
Former head of the FBI’s active shooter program, Katherine Schweit joined AST to sign complimentary copies of her book, ‘STOP THE KILLING: How to End the Mass Shooting Crisis,’ thanks to the generosity of our 2022 ‘ASTORS’ Awards Sponsors.
The 2022 ‘ASTORS’ Awards Program was Proudly Sponsored by NEC National Security Systems (NSS), ATI Systems, Automatic Systems of America, guardDog AI, Fortior Solutions, IPVideo Corporation, Rajant Corporation, RX Global, and SIMS Software!
We were pleased to welcome the esteemed New York City Fire Department (FDNY); the New York City Police Department (NYPD); and the NYC Hospital Police, as well as Executive Management from the U.S. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), and many other DHS agencies, Federal law enforcement agencies, and private/public partnerships such as the National Association of Women Law Enforcement Executives (NAWLEE), the 30×30 Initiative, a coalition of professionals advancing the representation of women in policing; and Operation Lifesaver, Inc. (OLI) (rail safety advocates).
The prestigious Annual ‘ASTORS’ Homeland Security Awards Program highlights the most cutting-edge and forward-thinking security solutions coming onto the market today, to ensure our readers have the information they need to stay ahead of the competition and keep our Nation safe – one facility, street, and city at a time.
In 2022 over 240 distinguished guests representing Federal, State, and Local Governments, and Industry Leading Corporate Firms gathered from across North America, Europe, and the Middle East to be honored among their peers in their respective fields.
Each year, to keep our communities safe and secure, security dealers, installers, integrators, and consultants, along with corporate, government, and law enforcement/first responder practitioners, convene in New York City to network, learn and evaluate the latest technologies and solutions from premier exhibiting brands at ISC East, the Natural Disaster & Emergency Management Expo (NDEM EXPO), and the ASIS NYC Expo.
ISC East is the Northeast’s leading security & public safety event, hosted in collaboration with sponsor Security Industry Association (SIA) and in partnership with ASIS NYC.
Corporate firms, the majority of which return year to year to build upon their Legacy of Wins, include:
Advanced Detection Technologies, AMAROK, ATI Systems, Axis Communications, Automatic Systems, BriefCam, Canon U.S.A., Cellbusters, CornellCookson, CyberArk Fortior Solutions, guardDog.ai, Hanwha Techwin of America, High Rise Escape Systems, IPVideo Corporation, Konica Minolta Business Solutions, NEC National Security Systems, NICE Public Safety, OnSolve, PureTech Systems, Quantum Corporation, Rave Mobile Safety, Regroup Mass Notification, Robotic Assistance Devices, Rajant Corporation, SafeLogic, Select Engineering Services LLC, Singlewire Software, SolarWinds Worldwide, Teledyne FLIR, Valor Systems, and West Virginia American Access Control Systems, just to name a few!
Why American Security Today?
The traditional security marketplace has long been covered by a host of publications putting forward the old-school basics to what is Today – a fast-changing security landscape.
American Security Today is uniquely focused on the broader Homeland Security & Public Safety marketplace with over 75,000 readers at the Federal, State, and local levels of government as well as firms allied to the government.
American Security Today brings forward a fresh compelling look and read with our customized digital publications that hold readers’ eyes throughout the story with cutting-edge editorial that provides solutions to their challenges.
Harness the Power of the Web – with our 100% Mobile Friendly Publications
AST Digital Publications are distributed to over 75,000 qualified government and homeland security professionals, in federal, state, local, and private security sectors.
‘PROTECTING OUR NATION, ONE CITY AT A TIME’
AST Reaches both Private & Public Experts, essential to meeting these new challenges.
Today’s new generation of public safety and security experts need real-time knowledge to deal with domestic and international terrorism, lone wolf attacks, unprecedented urban violence, shifts in society, culture, and media bias – making it increasingly difficult for Homeland Security, Law Enforcement, First Responders, Military and Private Security Professionals to implement coordinated security measures to ensure national security and improve public safety.
These experts are from Government at the federal, state, and local levels as well as from private firms allied to the government.
AST provides a full plate of topics in our AST Monthly Magazine Editions, AST Website, and AST Daily News Alerts, covering 23 Vital Sectors such as Access Control, Perimeter Protection, Video Surveillance/Analytics, Airport Security, Border Security, CBRNE Detection, Border Security, Ports, Cybersecurity, Networking Security, Encryption, Law Enforcement, First Responders, Campus Security, Security Services, Corporate Facilities, and Emergency Response among others.
AST has Expanded readership into integral Critical Infrastructure audiences such as Protection of Nuclear Facilities, Water Plants & Dams, Bridges & Tunnels, and other potential targets of terrorism.
Other areas of concern include Transportation Hubs, Public Assemblies, Government Facilities, Sporting & Concert Stadiums, our Nation’s Schools & Universities, and Commercial Business Destinations – all enticing targets due to the large number of persons and resources clustered together.
To learn more about ‘ASTORS’ Homeland Security Award Winners solutions, Be On the LookOut for the 2022 ‘ASTORS’ CHAMPIONS Edition Fully Interactive Magazine – the Best Products of 2022 ‘A Year in Review’.
The Annual CHAMPIONS edition includes a review of ‘ASTORS’ Award Winning products and programs, highlighting key details on many of the winning firm’s products and services, including video interviews and more.
It will serve as your Go-To Source throughout the year for ‘The Best of 2022 Products and Services’ endorsed by American Security Today, and can satisfy your agency’s and/or organization’s most pressing Homeland Security and Public Safety needs.
From Physical Security (Access Control, Critical Infrastructure, Perimeter Protection, and Video Surveillance Cameras and Video Management Systems), to IT Security (Cybersecurity, Encryption, Data Storage, Anti-Malware, and Networking Security – to name a few), the 2021 ‘ASTORS’ CHAMPIONS EDITION will have what you need to Detect, Delay, Respond to, and Mitigate today’s real-time threats in our constantly evolving security landscape.
It will also include featured guest editorial pieces from some of the security industry’s most respected leaders, and recognized firms in the 2022 ‘ASTORS’ Awards Program.
For more information on All Things American Security Today, as well as the 2023 ‘ASTORS’ Awards Program, please contact Michael Madsen, AST Publisher at email@example.com.
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- Provides named sources
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