Securus Technologies devises solution to flood of illegal cellphones

When the first cellular phones began appearing on the mass market in the mid-‘80s, they were large and extremely heavy devices. So bulky were the early cellular phones that they could usually only be installed in a car. They often took up a large portion of the available trunk space and required separate handset, transmission and antenna units.


These phones were also extremely expensive. The first cellular phones cost nearly $10,000 in todays money, and a typical monthly bill could easily amount to a quarter of that amount. Thus, throughout much of the 1980s, cellular phones were a status symbol, used by the rich, famous and upper-crust professionals, like high-end lawyers and doctors.


But as the ‘80s turned into the ‘90s, cellphones began to miniaturize. The first handheld cellphones were still as large and heavy as bricks. But this began to change in the early 1990s. The first truly portable cellphones were contained in bags similar in size to a large purse. But by the year 1995, flip-phones that could easily fit in a user’s pocket had become ubiquitous.


By the year 2000, cellular networks had begun to proliferate throughout the United States. Phones were now far less powerful than the first examples from the ‘80s. This was due to the fact that the proliferation of cell towers required far less energy to transmit as phone transmission follows a power law. At the same time, computing power had continued to increase exponentially, and the size of computational equipment had continued to shrink. All of this added up to cellphones that were small enough to be hid almost anywhere and that were cheap enough so that anyone could afford to own and use one.


Overall, this trend was great for the U.S. economy. However, it presented some real problems for the nation’s prisons. A flood of contraband cellphones began pouring into the nation’s carceral institutions. It didn’t take long before dangerous gangs were using these devices to intimidate witnesses, order hits on rivals, carry out drug deals and even put out hits on prison staff. The miniaturized cellphone was quickly proving to be a thorn in the side of the U.S. justice system.


The problem continued to worsen, with many hundreds of cases each year of criminal gangs using cellphones to carry out vicious and dangerous crimes. Then, in 2015, Securus Technologies announced that it had devised a solution to the nation’s contraband phone problem. The solution was known as the Wireless Containment System, a device that is capable of blocking 100 percent of illegal cellular calls originating from within the property of a prison.


The WCS has proven to be the death knell of illegal cell phones, completely removing the ability of gangs to use contraband phones in order to wreak havoc on prisons and the public.


Securus Technologies Aiming to Stop the Use of Contraband Phones Inside Prison with WCS Technology

In just about any prison in the United States, the supply of contraband packages is a problem. Even after many security checks and provisions, the inmates somehow manage to get the contraband items inside the prison. It is something that can put the lives of other inmates at risk and has even taken the lives of many law enforcement officials in the past. Other than weapons and other items, one of the most common contraband items that are found inside the prison is the phones. With the help of contraband phones, the inmates can communicate news outside of the jail that they are not supposed to and can even use their extended criminal network to control illegal activities from inside the prison. It destroys the fundamental reason why criminals are incarcerated if they can engage in illegal activities from inside the prison as well. It is why catching the contraband phones is highly essential.


One of the companies that have been working on developing the technology to stop the menace created by contraband phones inside the prison is Securus Technologies. The company has invested more than $40 million in developing contraband interdiction technology, which would not allow any unauthorized phones from inside the prison to make contact with the outside world. The wireless carriers that these contraband phones use would be working with the company to ensure that the contraband phones are jammed and are rendered useless from the correctional facilities. Rick Smith, CEO of Securus Technologies say that Wireless Containment Solutions by Securus Technologies is the only such technology that has been tried, tested, approved, and used by the correctional facility currently. It has managed to stop over 1.7 million illegal communications from the eight correctional facilities it has been installed in.


The entire United States was in a state of shock when an inmate posted a video on Facebook from inside the prison using a contraband phone. The inmate was brandishing a knife in the video, which showcases the loopholes in the security parameters of the prison facilities these days. One of the former corrections officers, Robert Johnson, who has worked for over 15 years in a prison facility with the primary job to confiscating contraband phones, was shot twice as he seized a contraband package worth over $50,000. Due to his ability to detect and catch the contraband phones, he was made the target. It wouldn’t have been possible without the use of contraband phones.


Currently, Robert Johnson works with the Securus Technologies to help the developers build a formidable Wireless Containment Solution that would ensure that the use of contraband phones in the prisons is eliminated with time. Securus Technologies hopes that with more added features in the future, it would be able to achieve its goal without a doubt.