A recent Time article describes a situation, that in spite of the over use and abuse of the term, may only be described as Orwellian.
or if OV's code butchers the link, copy and paste:
How does it work? According to the article, every 7 seconds your cell phone sends out a signal that traces your approximate location. If the phone is equipped with GPS, your location is identified with pinpoint accuracy. Not only are you tracked every seven seconds while carrying your phone, the phone company keeps a permanent record of your every move. As bad as that is, it gets worse. If the government wants to know where you've been, and what you've been doing, all it has to do is ask. The phone company turns over the data - no warrant required.
It's technology J. Edgar Hoover had wet dreams about.
Did you spend the night at the home of a girl you met at a party in 2005? If you did, your phone company has a record of it. Did a potential political candidate visit an adult book store on her lunch hour in 2002? Were the cell phones of a certain TV station manager and his secretary joined at the hip at a local Motel 6 last month? Did the mailman take 2 hours to deliver a letter to the home of a certain political activist's wife? Where did the CEO of Defense Contracting, Inc. spend his time on that business trip to Tampa last year? How about that Federal judge hearing a case against the government? Is it possible to dig up a little dirt that might influence the case? Just ask the phone company. The most massive collection of potential blackmail evidence in the history of the world is only a phone call away. The potential for abuse is virtually unlimited.
Big Brother really is watching you. Mr. Orwell's vision of the future has come to pass - although somewhat later than George predicted, in ways he never imagined even in his worst nightmares.
Anyone who isn't furious sure ought to be. As amazing as it might seem, once upon a time everyone got by just fine without cell phones. Until big business, and big government, learns to honor our right to privacy in the course of peacefully going about our private affairs, perhaps folks need to see just how easily we can get by without them now.
If it's important, people will call back.