Offender tracking systems The electronic 'ankle bracelet' - more of a mental concept Electronic ankle bracelets are not just devices worn around your ankles. They're part of a complex system for monitoring the behavior of suspects or offenders - who have to comply for the system to work. They can also serve to spare an accused suspect investigative jail time or to enable sentenced prisoners on work release programs to go to work during the day.
Some prisoners may also serve their sentence in house arrest wearing an ankle bracelet. A precondition for the successful use of "offender tracking" is that the offender in question actively supports the program and has no reason or incentive to flee.
A judge decides about the monitoring level Offender tracking was first introduced in the US. Some states in Germany agreed to jointly implement the system five years ago. A central computer collects data from the monitoring devices.
So far, the program only includes sentenced offenders on work-release programs or on probation, and accused suspects who are awaiting trial. There are different kinds of monitoring devices, including less intrusive ones.
Austria also uses offender tracking systems The bracelet itself is an encapsuled, waterproof device only slightly larger than a sports watch. In the house of the monitored offender, authorities will install a receiver, which detects signals from the bracelet within a certain range. The movements have to comply with a specific individual time plan or other requirements set by the court.
If an offender is allowed to leave the prison during daytime and go to work, such systems can ensure that they take the most direct route to work and back to jail in the evening. If the offender oversteps his boundaries, he will receive a warning: The anklet will start to vibrate.
It's also possible that a potential victim receives the alarm as well: The remote alcohol monitoring systems can be installed at home. Authorities would then use a remote alcohol monitoring system. The standard device in Germany is made by the company 3M. It comes equipped with a camera and face recognition software. In random intervals, the system will ask the offender to blow into the device.
The alcohol testing system will compare the face of the person blowing into the tube with biometric data of the offender. A less intense form of offender monitoring needs nothing more than a fixed-line telephone.
The main aspect of the monitoring system is the offender's proven intention to comply with the rules. The person must basically have his "ankle bracelet" in his head.
If the offender isn't there at the time of the call or someone else answers the phone, the system will detect the fraud and send a message to police or to the parole officer. This can also be used in the case of, for example, a potentially violent soccer hooligan, who was sentenced by court to stay home during games of his club.
He cannot bank on being left off the hook after receiving one call: The system can call at any time, also repeatedly. A recording of the voice won't help either - the machine asks questions that are just as random as the times of the call.
Support of therapy and reintegration The system can't just monitor house arrest. The system could call then and if the offender answers the phone, an alert will be sent to the central monitoring computer.
There is one golden rule: