How to Know if There Is a Hidden GPS in Your Car

Written by palmer owyoung
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How to Know if There Is a Hidden GPS in Your Car
(Jupiterimages/Creatas/Getty Images)

At times technology like GPS can be an incredible convenience, such as when you need directions to a location you're travelling to. At other times it can be a nuisance, such as if you think that your boss is trying to keep track of where you are going. Finding a hidden GPS system in your vehicle isn't difficult to do if you have the right tool to accomplish the task.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

Things you need

  • GPS detector

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  1. 1

    Do a visual and tactile search using your eyes and hands to look for anything out of the ordinary on the exterior or interior of your car. You are looking for a small rectangular shaped box about the size of a deck of cards. It may be stuck to your bumper or underneath a seat.

  2. 2

    Get a GPS bug detector (See resources below.) These devices are used to detect radio transmission on the frequencies most often used by GPS. As of 2010 these tools cost between £130-$800.

  3. 3

    Turn the bug detector on and begin scanning the exterior of the car. If the GPS is transmitting it will let you know with a fast beeping sound and a light will glow red. Make sure to scan the interior as well, although these devices will generally pick up signals within 10-15 feet.

  4. 4

    Make several scans, since these devices work by detecting the transmission of data they will only pick up the GPS when it is sending information. Some semi-passive systems will only transmit every 30 minutes or so. Other passive systems do not transmit data at all and their information is downloaded manually. These can only be detected with a visual scan.

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