- Police have used “Fog Reveal” to search hundreds of billions of records from 250 million mobile devices, and harnessed the data to create location analyses known among law enforcement as “patterns of life.”
- Sold by Virginia-based Fog Data Science LLC, Fog Reveal has been used since at least 2018 in criminal investigations ranging from the murder of a nurse in Arkansas to tracing the movements of a potential participant in the Jan. 6 insurrection at the Capitol.
- The tool is rarely, if ever, mentioned in court records, something that defense attorneys say makes it harder for them to properly defend their clients in cases in which the technology was used.
- The company was developed by two former high-ranking Department of Homeland Security officials under former President George W. Bush. It relies on advertising identification numbers, which Fog officials say are culled from popular cellphone apps such as Waze, Starbucks and hundreds of others that target ads based on a person’s movements and interests, according to police emails.