How to Ping a Cellphone Without Permission
In modern parlance and cellphone slang terms, to ‘ping’ a phone is technically to send a simple packet to a network interface and then receive an echo reply. It’s actually a digital version of what bats and dolphins do as part of echolocation.
But if you actually want to discover a particular user’s or particular phone’s exact location, that can also be termed pinging. The reasons for pinging are varied; some wish to meet up with a friend but aren’t able to, while police stations and detective agencies use legal software to ping cellphones and track down perpetrators and suspects.
The most detailed pinging, including the exact GPS location, phone number, and person’s name connected to the cellphone, are only available via authorized software that only a select few are allowed to access. Let’s look deeper into how to ping a cellphone without permission.
Phone Company Pinging
Did you know that there’s a default trigger in both iPhone and Android phones to return all GPS and location information back to their parent cellphone service providers? It falls under the heading of ‘location services.’ This information is kept with the service provider as long as you are still using their cellphone service data. Once you switch companies, then your location information is tracked by the new service provider.
The phone company can also use its multiple cellular towers in the area where you physically are with your cellphone to find you. That’s based on their company protocols, which vary from company to company. In the United States, 911 operators and service stations also have software access to your location. In the early 2000s, it was actually decreed a requirement to speed up and enable emergency personnel to reach you faster.
So, those are all the legal ways companies can access your location and pinpoint it precise enough to ‘ping’ you or any other phone.
Pinging a Phone You Have Access To
Keep in mind that it is illegal to ping somebody’s personal cellphone without first gaining physical access to their phone. That gets into legal issues of privacy and security. Both methods outlined in this article are introduced and explained, given that you’re trying to ping a phone whose owner is aware of it.
These two ways are also meant to be taken in a more fun, casual manner. You can track someone’s location through Google Maps, as long as they let you, or you can have fun pinging your own phone or a friend’s phone through Windows Command Prompt. Both methods are also legal.
Using Google Maps
This is probably the simplest method to live track someone’s exact location. After you’ve gained access to the phone that you want to ping, open the Google Maps app. Make sure it’s the latest version of the app. Tap on the three vertical line bar ‘Settings’ icon in the upper left-hand corner to bring up the ‘Settings Menu.’ Tap on the ‘Share Location’ listed icon. An informative box appears with the words ‘Let friends know where you are.’ Tap the blue ‘Get Started’ button.
A new dialog box pops up saying ‘Share your real time location.’ You can pick either ‘For 1 hour’ (with ‘+’ or ‘-‘ buttons to add or remove time) or ‘Until you turn this off.’ Make your selection.
To have the phone number’s location sent to you, tap on the three vertical dots to bring up the apps by which you can receive the data. That way, the phone you want to ping will send you the phone number and the location. You can also tap ‘Select people’ to type in your email address and have the information pinged back to you that way.
On your own phone, follow the same steps to share your real time location.
Ping a Cellphone from Windows Command Prompt
Did you know that your cellphone has an IP address, just like your computer? If both a cellphone and your computer are on the same IP network and using the same Wi-Fi, you can ping the phone.
This method is a lot more technical, but it shows you the exact technical readout of the ping. You’ll need the IP address of your computer and the IP address of the cellphone that you’re pinging for this to work. This only works with Android phones.
Press the ‘Windows’ key plus the ‘R’ to open the ‘Run’ box. Type in ‘cmd’ in lowercase letters to bring up the Windows command prompt. Then type ‘ipconfig’ and press ‘Enter.’ That will give you your machine’s IP address, if you don’t have it already.
In the next line of the command prompt, type ‘ping’ and then the complete IP address of the cellphone. This automatically sends a ping to the phone. If it’s been successful, you’ll see both the ping and at least two or three lines of ‘Reply from’ the IP address. Each of these lines represents a data packet that was sent.
This method is fast and gives you not just the technical ping, but the exact amount of data packets sent to the phone. If you get an error, try shutting the computer down, the phone down, and rebooting your wireless router, too. It could also be an IP address error, too. This method only sends a ping. It does not return any information back to you about the cell user’s physical location.
Two Ways to Ping a Cellphone
Both of the above methods give you different ways to ping a cellphone. It’s not possible to do it without the phone user’s permission at this time. Unless you are in law enforcement, work for a 911 emergency call center, or have been granted legal access through a cellphone provider, there is no other way to ping a cellphone to obtain a user’s location without permission.
But you can share locations through Google Maps or have fun pinging a cellphone through the Windows Command Prompt. Happy pinging!