The cell phone company EDS America recently identified 19 “rogue cell phone towers” in the United States that can intercept your phone’s data and allow potential hackers to listen in on private calls. The tower operators are unknown, but Forbes located at least one operating near military installations.
The FCC launched an investigation into the problem in August, rejecting an ACLU Freedom of Information Act request on the matter. The agency said that it wants to look into “criminal gangs and foreign intelligence services” that could be operating the towers. But the FCC knew about the existence of this technology as early as 2010, when government officials called to legally threaten a presenter at a Las Vegas tech convention for building a small rogue cell phone tower on stage, Wired reported. Police departments have the legal authority to operate structures similar to the rogue towers.
Of the 19 rogue cell phone towers identified by EDS America, 12 are located directly on the Southern border. Two more are located on the coasts, in New York and Seattle.