As a security analyst I often have to work with stealth apps that are meant to help people keep a check on someone. While the plethora of apps will tell you that it’s illegal to use them to spy on someone, no one will ever stop you from doing so. Therein lies the big question: should you really be spying on the people you’re spying on? Form a business point of view my opinion should fall somewhere in the affirmative, but a more logical approach begs that I ask you the whys of what you’re doing. Often it is a case of “I could so I did” and that’s where people go wrong. Stealth apps should be used by people who have something real to lose, that’s the prominent argument in favor of such apps. You shouldn’t be digging in deep if you’re wife is having regular book reading sessions and you want to know what she talks about when you’re not around – that would be crazy, right? It’s a whole different ball game if you’re in the middle of a divorce post a messy marital affair – it’s okay to spy on your wife then, right? Wrong! Both cases are more or less illegal, you can’t do that without getting into a huge pile of mess, and potentially damaging your relationship a whole lot more than it was before. The trouble with spy apps is that they destroy a person’s fundamental right to their own privacy. When we start with general curiosity somewhere along the line things go oh so very wrong. There are cases where monitoring or tracking someone is truly justified. For instance, employers who’ve made monitoring a part of their company policy and have a clear outline of how they will go about implementing the monitoring phase cannot be sued. If their employees are smart enough they won’t be having their own little leisure time at work, and if they do they’ll get caught in an instant – that form of monitoring or spying is fine, and it’s extremely legal. Even in the case of parents we can argue that such apps help them keep their wards safe. Most phones that you see in the hand of an adolescent are owned by their parents, legally a parent does nothing wrong by installing such an app on their child’s phone. The trouble is that a child that’s so closely caged can often suffocate and wither, or worse, wreak havoc on the road to rebel land. Spying isn’t for everyone… people should know what they’re getting into before they take the grand leap – they’re not just apps, these are smart tools that can do a lot more than tell you what your girlfriend gossiped about on her last trip to the parlor.