Sprint location glitch leads owners of stolen phones to the home of unknowing Las Vegas man
Services such as Find my iPhone are great as long as they work the way they're supposed to. Wayne Dobson, a 59 year old Las Vegas resident, has learned the hard way what happens when cell phone tracking programs malfunction. Owners of lost cell phones keep showing up at his door demanding their phones back. The only problem is, he doesn't have them. The problem seems to be isolated to Sprint cell phone users and due to a glitch that shows owners of lost devices that they are located near Dobson's home. According to the Las Vegas Review Journal:
Dobson was told that cellphone GPS systems don't provide exact locations - they give a general location of where to start your search. And for some reason his house is that location for his area.
Dobson's issues began way back in 2011 when the owner of a lost Sprint cell phone knocked on his door around midnight demanding his lost phone back. It turns out, the tracking software had led the disgruntled owner right to Dobson's front door. This man is one of many since that have shown up at Dobson's home demanding he return stolen cell phones he doesn't have possession of.
Unfortunately, the glitch hasn't just been limited to cell phone tracking programs but has also led police to his door on domestic violence calls that were placed from Sprint cell phones. It appears the issue has to do with a glitch in the GPS data that is sent from the carrier to the tracking software or police departments.
As of now, Dobson still has no clear answers from Sprint or any other company that may be able to help him. They agree it's an odd issue but still aren't sure exactly how to fix it.
A spokesperson from Sprint said they're looking into the problem but until it is solved, Dobson has been forced to put up signage outside his home stating that he doesn't have your cell phone and to call the police.
Source: Las Vegas Review Journal