Someone may put a phone number tracker on a phone so that they can locate the device in the event it is lost or stolen. Phone number trackers may also be installed on phones to track the location of children, partners, employees and friends.
Some phone number trackers must be downloaded and installed on the phone to be tracked. Others provide tools on their websites that allow users to track cell phone numbers without download or installing any software. Some of the services are offered for free while other companies charge for the use of their tracking products. In some cases, user registration and account creation are required before the services and tools can be used. Through these tools and services, phones are tracked and located through factory-installed carrier information and GPS services on each phone.
It is illegal to track a person without his consent, so most programs send texts requesting permission from the owner that the phone can be tracked. Once permission is granted, the phone location is sent. Future permission is not necessary. However, some service providers leave it up to the person who is tracking the phone to inform the owner of the phone that it is being tracked.