GPS interference is the use of frequency transmitting equipment to block or interfere with radio communications. The types of communications that can be scrambled include phone calls, text messages, GPS systems, and Wi-Fi networks. The term is also called GPS spoofing. The device used can also be called a cell phone blocker or signal.
The military initially developed GPS jammers to deceive the enemy’s information about geographic location and targets. Then, the device is suitable for consumers who want to protect their privacy or prevent their tracking. However, without proper technical knowledge or improper operation, GPS Jammers may cause communication interruption, thereby causing damage.
In the United States and Canada, it is illegal to buy, sell or use GPS jammers. Interference can result in fines, equipment seizures and jail time.
How does GPS interference work?
The receiver can use orbiting satellites and radio signals to determine the precise location of any GPS-enabled device or vehicle. A paper jam occurs when the device sends radio signals at the same frequency as the GPS-enabled device. This will prevent GPS-enabled devices from determining their location and may prevent them from establishing or maintaining their connections.
The GPS jammer itself is usually a small, independent frequency transmitter capable of sending jamming signals within a range of 5-10 meters. These devices are usually connected to a cigarette lighter or charging/USB port and consume very little power. Although GPS jammers are illegal in most places, GPS jammers can be purchased online and appear in different types, such as Wi-Fi jammers, Bluetooth jammers, remote control jammers, or drone jammers.
Use of GPS jammer
GPS jamming devices can be used in various applications, such as:
Hide, modify or hide the positioning signal of the GPS unit.
Prevent mobile devices from making or receiving calls, text messages or emails.
Prevent Wi-Fi enabled devices from successfully connecting to the Internet.
Avoid the possibility of locating the device in an emergency.
Hide the location of the device or vehicle.
Security issues related to GPS interference
Although GPS jammers may cause minor interference, such as signal loss, they may also pose a significant risk to public safety. For example, GPS jammers cannot distinguish communication types and can block incoming or outgoing calls from emergency responders. In addition, the device may block multiple calls and disrupt all communications in various frequency ranges.
As more and more industries (such as law enforcement and transportation) rely on GPS-enabled devices, interference can interfere with critical data and operations. In fleet management tracking, GPS information can be connected to data such as fuel consumption, driving behavior, engine health, vehicle timing and safety measures. Therefore, interference may destroy all this information and cause serious interruptions.