Can Two Way Walkie Talkies be Tracked or Traced?

can walkie talkies be traced

Is your Walkie Talkie Communication Private? – We are going to look at if Two Way Radios can be traced.

Have you ever thought about whether you can find out where a walkie-talkie is? Even though we don’t usually think about it, sometimes it’s important to know where a two-way walkie-talkie is sending its signals. The answer might be surprising for some, but you can actually track and find a walkie-talkie when it’s turned on.

Two-way hand radios act as both a signal transmitter and receiver. This means that it gives off a signal that can be tracked with the right equipment and knowledge. Many times, this is done for safety or legal reasons.
The basic way these devices work is they use radio frequency to send radio communication through the air. This signal is then picked up by nearby receiving stations or towers and tracked. These stations help the signal travel longer distances and reach the intended person’s two-way walkie-talkie.


The most common way to find a walkie-talkie is through something called “triangulation.” Here’s how it works: We make a triangle with two stations or towers that receive signals, along with the walkie-talkie. The walkie-talkie sends a signal to these stations, and they help figure out where it is on a map by measuring the signal strength or distance from the tower. People have been using this way for a long time because it’s pretty good at finding where a walkie-talkie is. However, it is still not as accurate as GPS, and the signals can be affected by steel, buildings, and other obstructions that don’t typically affect GPS.

In other words, imagine you have two radio towers set up in different places, and you’re trying to find where a walkie-talkie user is located. This is where triangulation comes in. When the walkie-talkie sends its signal, it reaches both towers at slightly different times. These towers can measure the strength and timing of the signal they receive, allowing the walkie-talkie to be tracked.

By comparing the strength and timing of the signals received at both towers, it’s possible to calculate the general direction from which the signal is coming. The two towers create two lines of possible locations, and where those lines intersect is a pretty good estimate of where the walkie-talkie user is located. This method is called triangulation because it involves forming a triangle between the two towers and the walkie-talkie’s location.
Triangulation can determine how far away you are from the towers based on the signal strength. If you are closer to one than the other, the signal strength will be stronger. This will move the lines of the triangle, giving a location.


tracking two way hand radios

Trilateration is similar to triangulation, but instead of focusing on the angles between the towers and the walkie-talkie, it looks at the time it takes for the signal to travel from the walkie-talkie to each tower. Because radio signals travel at a known speed, the time it takes for the signal to reach each tower can be used to calculate how far away the walkie-talkie is from each tower, allowing it to be traced. By using the distances from at least three towers, you can pinpoint the location where the signals intersect.

Again, in both triangulation and trilateration, it’s important to note that while these methods can give a good idea of where a walkie-talkie is, they might not be as precise as GPS (Global Positioning System), especially in areas with obstacles like tall buildings or metal structures that can interfere with the radio communication and signals.
As you can see, tracing a walk-talkie location is actually possible, even though many people aren’t aware of it. This is something that we see done for a variety of reasons, but it can really be helpful for emergency situations. If you find yourself in an emergency, be sure that you leave your device on so you can be traced.

Tracing Your Two- Way Walkie Talkie

While it is possible to track and trace a walkie-talkie, it’s not as accurate as if the person was using a GPS device. It’s not recommended to use this type of tracking to actually find the device. However, if you find yourself looking for someone that you know was operating a walkie-talkie, there is peace of mind that there is hope.

You can use either triangulation or trilateration to find the location of a two way hand radio, should you need to. The triangulation method is the easiest and most common method used, however these methods only work when the walkie-talkie is on and sending out a signal. They will not work when the device is turned off, as there isn’t any signal to trace, similar to a cell or mobile phone pinging off a phone tower.  There is no need to have private radio communication, however, for the tracking.

In essence, walkie-talkies are not as secretive as one might think, as their signals can be traced, making them a practical tool for locating individuals or managing radio communication in various scenarios. However, they are not going to give you pinpoint accuracy as you would get with, say, a GPS device. This tracing will only give you the general vicinity. But this information can certainly be helpful when looking for someone who is using a certain device.

There you have it! Two Way Walkie-talkies aren’t as elusive as one might think! They can be traced and tracked when needed using these different methods.

If you would like to read more about this topic more information on two way radios can be found here

About The Arthur
Picture of Kenny Zhang
I've been running a factory that manufactures two-way radios & their accessories. We want to share some knowledge and news about Walkie-Talkie from the sight of the supplier.

One Response

  1. Интересная статья! Скажите, пожалуйста, можно ли обнаружить местонахождение mp3 плеера оснащённый fm-радио? Во время трансляции fm радио, и без трансляции, но с включённым mp3 плеером, вставленными наушниками, в котором играет ранее загруженная музыка в локальное хранилище?

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