Each map is tailored for a specific parolee. A map can show, for instance, areas where a paroled pedophile must remain clear of--such as a school--when going to and from an off-site counseling session. When the parolee returns to the halfway house, he places the device in a docking station, which transmits the data to iSecureTrac. Later this year, Iowa hopes to upgrade the system to provide for real-time transmission of location via a cellular hookup.
Using the same docking station, Iowa authorities can even test parolees on whether they've been drinking. An offender blows into a straw attached to a Mitsubishi Electronic Monitoring System, which will record alcohol levels. The device is attached to the docking station, which transmits the results to authorities.
"Parole agents can't be available 24 hours a day to track offenders," says Lois Osborn, Iowa Department of Corrections electronic monitoring coordinator, "so this system is another tool to help them out with their surveillance."