Has It Really Come To This?

December 6, 2018

With cellphones and even car satellite systems giving parents opportunities to keep tabs on their teens as never before, some are apparently turning to an even more personal touch: an ankle monitor.

That’s right: the same tech that lets the authorities know whether parolees are violating restraining orders or trying to flee the country, can now be applied -- literally -- to your kid.

According to the tech blog Quartz, one company pioneering the civilian use of these ankle monitors is Florida’s Tampa Bay Monitoring. Billing the bracelets as a hedge against “risky behavior,” a video from the company touts, “a variety of options for parents whether they are simply looking out for their teens overall safety or concerned for the teen that may be sneaking out of the house at night or at risk of running away.”

“We provide a bracelet that is near-impossible to cut off,” Frank Kopczynski, the company’s president. “It also allows us to have two-way communication and gives us the option of sounding a piercing alarm.”

His ankle monitoring service, which costs around $300 a month, lets the person monitoring eavesdrop on the wearer, talk back to them, or send a piercing alarm in case any terms are being violated.

“Let’s say, from 8:30 in the morning to 2:30 in the afternoon, your sorry butt better be at the local high school,” Kopczynski said. “The minute you cross that perimeter, we know.”

Incidentally, if your kid really goes off the deep end, Kopczynski has you covered there as well: he also runs a bail bonds company.

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