Mobility

Man burns down real life trailer in retaliation for online spat

According to Yahoo! News, a Navy man who got mad for being mocked as a nerd in an Internet flame war climbed into his car and drove 1,300 miles from Virginia to Texas. On arrival, he burnt down the trailer of his antagonist.

In a gripping sequence of events, Russell Tavares, who works as a weapons systems operator, posted photos online along the way. The photos showed the welcome signs at various states' borders, to prove that he meant business.

Upon arriving at Elm Mott, he posted one last photo of a "Welcome to Texas" sign before throwing a gasoline-soaked piece of plastic foam into the back of the victim John G. Anderson's mobile home and lighting a flare. Anderson suffered $50,000 of damage to his trailer and computer equipment as well as suffering smoke inhalation trying to put out the blaze.

For that, Tavares, age 27, was sentenced to seven years in prison just last week after pleading no contest to arson and admitting he set the blaze.

Now, here comes the interesting part. According to Man burns down trailer in online feud:

James Pack, an investigator with the McLennan County Sheriff's Office, caught up with Tavares after talking to people in several states and Spain who had been involved in the online feud. Tavares' cell phone records showed he was in the Waco area at the time of the fire, Pack said.

Yup, that's right. Most people are not aware of this, but one's movement can be easily tracked by your mobile operator as your mobile phone transparently switches over from one transmitting mast to the next. In fact, depending on mobile phone functionality and operator support, you can actually see the assigned name of the transmitter that you are currently connected to.

So, lesson of the day is: If you are planning a heist or illegal activities of any kind, keep you mobile phone at home - or at least turn it off! Just how much do you think your mobile phone operator knows about you?

About

Paul Mah is a writer and blogger who lives in Singapore, where he has worked for a number of years in various capacities within the IT industry. Paul enjoys tinkering with tech gadgets, smartphones, and networking devices.

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