A common mistake in cell site analysis cases is that the prosecution may fail to check with the network provider (3 , 02, Virgin, Orange etc) with mobile operator that any changes to masts had occurred prior to the radio tests. The way the cell site telecommunications system works is the base transceiver system (BTS) also called a base station or cell site acts as the antenna in which to route the calls through. Using a mobile phone’s call data records also known as CDR’s supplied by the mobile phone company using a court order we can trace the historic geographical movement of the phone as it moved from place to place. Plotting a location against time we can ascertain movement direction of a particular mobile phone user. This could mean the direction could be opposite to what the investigation party picked up in their cell site analysis mobile phone forensic investigation.


A phone can be attributed to to a person and we can make an approximation of the location of that individual. Building and hills can project the cell signal in other direction to the specified cell location on the government OFCOM site. The base station operates communication between mobile telephone handsets within a give cell azimuth. CDR’s are in essence enhanced billing records that tell us the nearest cell cite mast the call was routed through. From the these call data records, costing around ?50 from the network provider, we can ascertain the approximate coordinates plotted on a map.


It is pretty strong evidence if the CDR’s indicate the suspect (or at least their mobile phone) was in a particular cell site location at the time of a murder.



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