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Kidnapping ankle bracelets

....help find that missing child!
  (+14, -10)
(+14, -10)
  [vote for,

A friend of a friend's 12 year old daughter is missing. At this point, having disappeared from a mall friday night, it is still uncertain whether she is a runaway or a kidnap victim.

If the technology is in existence to help lost motorists figure out where they are....some sort of satellite tracking system....then why can't someone develop an electronic ankle bracelet that will help track and locate a child.

These bracelets will be similar to the electronic ankle bracelets worn by criminals on "house arrest" to make sure they don't leave their homes. Therefore, they will need a special remote trigger to unlock them --- a trigger provided by the family doctor who will be the only authorized person to take off the bracelet, move the data card to a new, bigger bracelet as the child grows, and lock that new bracelet into place. They will be kept in *off* mode for tracking at all times unless turned on remotely by a law enforcement agency.

All babies will have their first bracelet on before leaving the hospital. The bracelet will remain on the children until the age of 18 when they will have the option of signing a waiver to keep the bracelet on and take over the yearly payment of $100 for the service.

Bracelets, obviously, must be waterproof and very durable. They will also come in a variety of colours.....

Susen, Jan 06 2002

Wherify. GPS+PCS kid tracker bracelet http://www.wherify.com
A locking bracelet that allows pinpointing the wearer to within a few feet. $400 + $50/mo. Will be shown at this years CES. [bristolz, Jan 06 2002, last modified Oct 17 2004]

Also tracked down at the BBC http://news.bbc.co....1742000/1742203.stm
[dare99, Jan 08 2002, last modified Oct 21 2004]

(?) Techno Bra http://www.wired.co...,1282,20517,00.html
This would work if kidnapped but not a runaway [zardoz, Jan 09 2002, last modified Oct 21 2004]

(?) 7 [or 8th] paragraph http://www.chronicl....co.uk/phoebe5.html
conjecture though [technobadger, Jan 12 2002, last modified Oct 21 2004]

(?) [Garou]'s link http://www.beststuf....php3?story_id=1405
as a link. [angel, Jan 16 2002, last modified Oct 21 2004]

(?) Digital Angel http://www.digitalangel.net/
They had an embedable model pending FDA approval at one point. Don't see it on the site, though. [Orb2069, Mar 22 2002, last modified Oct 17 2004]

The implanted chip version. http://www.guardian...3605,785575,00.html
Wendy Duvall's 11-year-old daughter is to be fitted with this tracking device. [RobertKidney, Sep 04 2002, last modified Oct 21 2004]

Danes tag kids with Bluetooth http://www.theregis.../bluetooth_tagging/
from The Register. 19 April, 2004. [st3f, Oct 05 2004, last modified Oct 21 2004]

Madeleine http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/6962122.stm
[po, Aug 24 2007]


       my god susen, that is awful.   

       of course this is why mobile phones for children are so good - trouble is we now have a huge crime statistics in other children / youths bullying these children , assaulting them & stealing the phones. there must be a way that YOUR phone is no use to anyone else at all to prevent that.   

       I do hope she is found safe and well soon
po, Jan 06 2002

       I thought of the microchip implants we use in horses and dogs....but they require that somebody scan the horse or dog to read them...they don't "track" the animal.   

       I don't think the average child-snatcher is interested in cutting off limbs....it's just not the same type of crime. The bracelets could be so skin tight as to prevent easy removal.....and made of something that can't be easily cut through....   

       Think of this...within 15 minutes that a child is missing, a mall security guard calls the local police station with the child's name and ID number (provided by a parent), the police tap it in a computer and the locator bracelet sends out a signal....cops rush to the area and retrieve the child.... <sigh>   

       And thanks for the link.....they are saying exactly what I was thinking....
Susen, Jan 06 2002

       Pretty grim situation, Susen. I hope everything turns out OK.

I doubt that your idea will provide any protection because a) kids will find a way to get rid of them and b) some sicko will find a way to hack the system and track down kids who are on their own.

I also think that, if the idea was implemented, many parents would use it as an excuse to pay even less attention to where their kids are and what they are doing.
DrBob, Jan 06 2002

       Many years ago, when I had young children and worked for govt research dept`, spent some time on this but was most discouraged by industry reaction. The bracelet design was designed sent low power signals constantly and to scream loudly over emergency chanells when removed.
john b, Jan 06 2002

thumbwax, Jan 06 2002

       unfortunately, none as of late last night....the last that I talked to my friend. The parents are still together....so no kidnapping by a spouse due to divorce/custody problems.   

       She was last seen in the company of a male in his mid 20s....   

       I personally don't know the family, this is all through a mutual friend who only told me because the young lady that is missing also rides/shows horses. They are from Tennessee.
Susen, Jan 07 2002

       croissant for the idea, huggles for you susen, my good wishes go out to you and your friends.
daruma, Jan 08 2002

       well, a vague lead of a girl and young man fitting the descriptions has surfaced in Alabama where they supposedly spent Sunday night at a motel near an interstate.... I don't even want to speculate why a 12 year old would be at a motel with a man. I hope in a way it wasn't her....but it would be nice if the parents at least had some reason to believe she is still alive and fine.   

       Bris --- great link to wherify personal tracking device which won an inovation of the year award....so this is baked and award winning and I get fishbones???? Ouch.   

       I guess I will delete the idea in another week....I'm leaving it up for now just so I can post, hopefully, a good outcome to this sad story.
Susen, Jan 09 2002

       Surely the negative votes must be quibbles with practicality. Who wouldn't want to track down a missing child?   

       When my wife and I first debated whether to try to have a child, the biggest obstacle for me was facing the realization that my heart would be so irreversibly wrapped around someone who would ultimately be subject to such daunting risks beyond my control.   

       This is so scary, and the fact that she is *not* special (in that she's just one of hundreds; of course I realize she is special to her parents) only makes it worse.
beauxeault, Jan 09 2002

       In my case, it's not practicality, it's privacy invasion.
StarChaser, Jan 11 2002

       Whose privacy SC, the kidnappers?
bristolz, Jan 11 2002

       Since we're discussing criticisms of this idea, I can't imagine older children being keen on wearing one of these. It's important for a child growing up to have freedom (even to break rules and go places they're not supposed to), otherwise they'll never learn how to live their own lives. Would you be happy as an adult wearing one of these? If not, I don't see how you can impose one on a child, and if children aren't happy to wear these, they will take them off somehow, and they will become useless.
pottedstu, Jan 11 2002

       Stu, the bracelets introduced this last week not only had GPS contact and the ability to keep time, in an albeit slightly oversized wrist package, but also promised to deliver all the features your cool teen would want on his/her wrist in the very near future:pager, cell phone, net interface, etc. etc. ...It sometimes amazes me how I got along with nothing more than a dime in my pocket to call home in emergencies....What's worse, I think I was over 20!
jurist, Jan 11 2002

       Yeah, very sneaky. You could potentially track them with their cellphone as well, but these things can be turned off, or left till the battery runs out.
pottedstu, Jan 11 2002

       Somehow, I can't help but envision the Voodoo Anklet of Extreme Discomfort from Return to Monkey Island (I think.) I also have to agree with SC's and Stu's note that this would be an invasion of the wearers' privacy.   

       Perhaps rather than a virtually irremovable anklet, one that can be removed with a key, code, etc.
nick_n_uit, Jan 12 2002

       Well, would it be okay if the child about whose wrist the terrible privacy-robbing device was clasped agreed to wearing the device?  After explaining it to them, both of my children thought it was a good idea to wear them.
bristolz, Jan 12 2002

bristolz, Jan 12 2002

       Bristolz: Anything that invades privacy even a little bit is bad, because it'll never stop there. 'Won't someone PLEASE think of the children!' Ok, now little kids are wearing them.   

       Well, sometimes older kids get kidnapped or run away; let's put them on them too.   

       Companies have people who have sensitive information; lets tag them as well, and they have to wear them all the time, because they still have the info while they're not at work.   

       It costs the FBI a lot of manpower and money to try and find people when they've been kidnapped, and it costs insurance companies money to pay out policies; lets offer incentives to people to wear them voluntarily.   

       And with the usual 'make everything that isn't banned compulsory' ideas of government, now everyone has to wear them. Want to bet that nobody but the government will be able to track them?   

       Yes it sucks that kids get kidnapped. But this will only remove the stupid kidnappers. It's easy enough to shield the thing with a piece of window screen and some fooling around with circuitry to block the signal, then take it off with a hacksaw.   

       "That's unrealistic!" Really? Does your car have seatbelts? In the US it went:
No seatbelts
Seatbelts are an option
The government decides that safety devices are good and now every car is required to have lap belts, then someone invents shoulder belts and now those are required.
Insurance companies offer incentives to people to use them.
'Everything not banned is compulsory'; now people are required to wear seatbelts under penalty of being fined.

       This may not be true everywhere in the US, but it is in Florida. And I would not be at all surprised to see it become either very widespread among the states or <less likely> federally mandated.   

       Hey, there's another one. Car seats for kids. Same progression as above, all the way to federally mandated. Airbags, too.
StarChaser, Jan 12 2002

       we call it "nanny state"over here, Star.
po, Jan 12 2002

       Here too.
StarChaser, Jan 12 2002

       I would volunteer to wear one when I go to town alone or horseback riding alone. I've been left unconscience in the woods by a horse before.....
Susen, Jan 12 2002

       <famous last words>That explains a lot *snicker*</famous last words>
thumbwax, Jan 12 2002

       Okay, SC, yours are all valid, "slippery slope" points, but you're never babysitting for me.
bristolz, Jan 13 2002

       Bristolz: Fine with me, I'm not a babysitter.   

       UnaBubba: Stupidity should be fatal, or at least painful. I'm capable of taking care of myself. I don't need someone to hold my hand every second of the day. But what does 24 hour surveillance have to do with injury?
StarChaser, Jan 13 2002

       There would be problems with this system in that it would attract people to crack it. If you can turn it on by an authorised way on then people can turn it on in an unauthorised way. Essentially if the authorities can use it to find or track children the so can other interested parties.   

       If the system is only possessed by rich children then it would worthwhile for kidnappers to hack into it to help them tack down their chosen targets. If it was available to all children then people would break into it for commerical information or to find children that are in "convenient" locations.   

       However as [Thumbwax] has been suggesting, everyday there is hope.
Aristotle, Jan 14 2002

       why an ankle bracelet?
technobadger, Jan 14 2002

       UnaBubba: Yes, as I said, it starts off with pure intentions and would only be used by those who are authorized. As Aristotle says, it won't stay like that. Kind of like the GPS system, that originally had a 'fudge factor' for nonmilitary units. Someone figured out how to remove it, and they finally gave up on using it.   

       Technobadger: Probably because that's slightly baked already. 'House arrest' bracelets or anklets that sound an alarm if they go out of a certain distance from a base transmitter.
StarChaser, Jan 14 2002

       SC as on 'wilder napalm'?
technobadger, Jan 15 2002

       [admin: URL moved to 'links' -- bristolz]
Garou, Jan 16 2002

       What's 'wilder napalm'?
StarChaser, Jan 18 2002

       Any news yet Susen?
La-La, Jan 31 2002

       me too. crossed fingers
po, Aug 01 2002

       no idea, can't answer this. I haven't spoken to anyone, no family/no friends, since leaving.....and I really don't want to. Let's forget I had another life once, k?
Susen, Aug 01 2002

       from the story I got from her, UB, we would have needed a radar screen manned 24 hours a day just to keep up....
runforrestrun, Aug 01 2002

       I can't annotate this without sending a thought to Susen, wherever she is. Hope. For all manner of good things.   

       [adds link to register article about kidds getting bluetoothed in a park]
st3f, Apr 19 2004

       Am I missing something here? Couldn't they be cut off? If they were made large and rigid enough to prevent removal, forcing a kid to wear this thing would be torture. I'd rather not subject a child to a clunky, tight, and uncomfortable permanent band for 18 years of their life.
JRandMoby, Apr 20 2004

       Anything that has to be worn at all times leads to sanitary, and comfort issues. Making this device capable of transmitting might require it to have a power source as well.   

       These are technical issues, which can eventually be worked around, but in general, an implant, such as the microchip on pets would be preferable, and could be used for various other things, such as SSN, Driver's licences, checking, etc.   

       Except AAHH AHHH! Oh NO! It's the Mark of the Beast! AHHH AHHH! Religious Insanity!   

       In all seriousness though, a simple [dreaded RFID word] and door sensors such as those already in many stores would be a reasonable help even now, and wouldn't take much effort to install. Would have solved things quite nicely in a few kidnapping instances, and at the very least, it could aid in using video tapes to identify the people with the children. As I understand it, the implants on animals are in fact RFID, or something quite similar anyway.
ye_river_xiv, Aug 24 2006

       Animal implants are, in fact, arfids.
shapu, Aug 24 2006

       slippery slop.
Voice, Aug 25 2006

       [Susen] never did come back, did she?
normzone, Aug 24 2007


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