I've reported before on the use of the Virtual Earth platform for Offender Tracking by State and Local Government agencies. Here is a similar application developed not by a Public Sector agency but a commercial organization, Vision 20/20. The company's Virtual Earth based free online service, POM Offender Locator,*tracks 650,000 registered offenders throughout the US. Like similar constituent service sites developed by government organizations,*this application also allows users to sign up for alerts to be notified when an offender has moved into a designated neighborhood.

Equally interesting is another Virtual Earth based service offered by Vision 20/20, the POM Pilot that features a GPS device to allow for the tracking of persons and vehicles on a Virtual Earth map. It*allows parents, for example, to monitor the whereabouts and driving habits of teenagers. Speeding and crossing the boundaries of an established "geo-fence" are monitored and visualized. These same capabilities have, in the past year,*been incorporated*into home arrest products--again, an*application targeted for State and Local Government customers. With*some of these home arrest applications,*in addition to monitoring an offender's movements throughout the community, GPS tracking systems monitor "exclusion" or "inclusion" zones--locations where a person is not allowed to enter or specific areas the person must remain within during certain times.

It is interesting to see this type of tracking application finding its way into offerings targeted toward the general public.

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