Wondering how you can implement GPS tracking technology in your business while complying with the law? We cover GPS tracking laws by state and help you sort through the regulations that could affect your business.
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In our digital-focused working world, many employers use GPS tracking technology to streamline their business processes and ensure workers are where they need to be while on the clock.
GPS tracking can also give you a clear visual of employees’ routes, ensure safety for lone workers on job sites, and help prevent time theft through early clock-ins.
Employee GPS tracking apps provide many benefits, but it’s essential to know the laws surrounding tracking employees’ locations in the United States before using them.
To help you out, we’ve compiled this guide covering GPS tracking laws by state.
We also explain the consequences of misusing GPS trackers and show you how to track employees’ locations securely.
- There’s no federal law in the US that limits GPS tracking by private parties.
- Many state laws limit GPS tracking to prevent criminal stalking behavior, and only a few mention businesses directly.
- Businesses should establish a GPS tracking policy and may need to gain employee consent to tracking before implementing.
- To protect employee privacy, use GPS tracking technology like Connecteam, which tracks employees’ locations only during work hours.
Are the Laws on GPS Tracking the Same in Every State?
There’s no nationwide law on GPS tracking in the US. This means there isn’t one rule that applies in every state. Instead, each state can enact laws regulating GPS tracking.
Many states have enacted laws that define or limit acceptable GPS tracking uses. However, these are often found in anti-stalking laws that aim to protect against criminal behavior.
Few laws directly mention businesses at all. However, some provide explicit exceptions for companies engaged in legitimate business practices.
It’s also more common to find state laws addressing GPS tracking of motor vehicles than other devices. Many states explicitly allow GPS tracking of employer-owned vehicles.
In those cases, neither employer asked their employees to consent to GPS tracking.
Why Are GPS Tracking Laws in Place?
Most GPS tracking laws are in place to protect individuals from privacy violations that could put them in harm’s way.
Very few states have enacted GPS tracking laws that apply directly to employers or legitimate businesses. Most state laws are concerned with preventing stalking, harassment, and unauthorized surveillance in general.
In all states, GPS tracking can be conducted with the consent of the person to be tracked or the owner of a vehicle to be tracked. Check out our state-by-state guidance below for the rules that apply in your area.
GPS Tracking Laws by Each State
Alabama doesn’t prohibit GPS tracking of employees.
That said, it’s a criminal violation in Alabama to intentionally conduct surveillance while trespassing in a private place. The law defines a private place as “a place where one may reasonably expect to be safe from casual or hostile intrusion or surveillance, but such term does not include a place to which the public or a substantial group of the public has access.”
There are no laws prohibiting GPS tracking of employees in Alaska.
Alaska’s anti-stalking statute makes it a criminal offense to follow or monitor a person with GPS without that person’s consent if doing so would make them reasonably fearful for their safety or the safety of a family member.
Arizona doesn’t prohibit GPS tracking of employees.
The only limits on GPS tracking come under the state’s anti-stalking law. Under Arizona law, a person commits stalking if they intentionally use a GPS system to surveil a person for 12 hours or more, or on 2 or more occasions, without the person’s consent.
There are no state laws prohibiting or limiting GPS tracking in Arkansas.
California strictly limits GPS tracking to protect individual privacy, including for employees.
It’s a criminal invasion of privacy in California to use GPS tracking to determine the location or movement of a person without their consent. Employers should notify employees of GPS tracking devices and gain their consent. This applies even for company-owned vehicles.
Read more about California labor law
There are no state laws in Colorado preventing employers from using GPS tracking in their legitimate business.
Colorado enforces Vonnie’s law, which prohibits using GPS tracking to place a person under surveillance in a manner that would cause serious emotional distress.
Read more about Colorado labor law
Connecticut’s Electronic Monitoring Act requires employers to notify employees of any electronic monitoring in the workplace—Including GPS tracking devices and their intended purposes. Employee consent isn’t required.
It’s also a felony under Connecticut’s electronic stalking law to intentionally place a person under electronic surveillance that causes—or could reasonably be expected to cause—that person to suffer substantial emotional distress.
There are no state laws in Delaware that prohibit GPS tracking of employees.
Delaware’s violation of privacy law prohibits knowingly installing GPS tracking on a motor vehicle without the vehicle owner’s consent. This doesn’t apply to the lawful use of electronic tracking devices by law enforcement or by parents for purposes of monitoring their minor child.
Using GPS tracking to monitor employees through company-owned vehicles or devices is legal in Florida. Employers can also track personally owned devices and vehicles for legitimate business purposes.
While Florida law prohibits installing a tracking device or application on another person’s property without that person’s consent, several exceptions exist. These include persons acting in good faith on behalf of a business for a legitimate business purpose. Other exceptions include law enforcement, parents or guardians tracking their minor children, and caregivers for someone elderly or disabled.
Read more about Florida labor law
There are no state laws prohibiting or limiting GPS tracking in Georgia.
Read more about Georgia labor law
Hawaii doesn’t prohibit GPS tracking of employees.
It’s illegal in Hawaii to intentionally install GPS devices on a person’s property without that person’s consent or a valid warrant.
There are no state laws in Idaho that prohibit GPS tracking of employees.
In fact, Idaho law doesn’t specifically limit GPS tracking at all. However, it does prohibit using a tracking device to intercept electronic, wire, or oral communications in some circumstances unrelated to business use.
Illinois doesn’t prohibit GPS tracking of employees for business purposes.
Anti-stalking laws in Illinois prohibit GPS tracking of vehicles without the owner’s consent. However, the law includes an exception for tracking a business-owned vehicle while an employee of the business drives it. The law doesn’t cover tracking through devices other than vehicles.
Read more about Illinois labor law
There are no state laws prohibiting or limiting GPS tracking in Indiana.
However, an Indiana Senate Bill has been introduced that would prohibit placing an electronic device to track a person or the person’s property without consent. The bill hasn’t yet been made law.
Iowa state law doesn’t prohibit GPS tracking of employees.
In Iowa, it’s illegal to place a GPS device on a person or object without consent in order to track a person’s movement without a legitimate purpose. The law considers business use a legitimate purpose.
Kansas doesn’t prohibit GPS tracking of employees.
In 2023, Kansas updated its anti-stalking law to include using electronic tracking systems within its definition of a “course of conduct” that could be considered stalking.
No state laws in Kentucky address or limit GPS tracking of employees on mobile devices or company-owned vehicles.
Kentucky law prohibits using a tracking device on a motor vehicle without consent from the vehicle’s owner. The law makes exceptions for devices that assist the driver of the vehicle, law enforcement, and parents or guardians in tracking minor children.
In Louisiana, it’s illegal to use GPS tracking to determine a person’s location or movement without that person’s consent. However, the law makes an exception for employers that provide a device to employees for use during their employment.
There are no state laws in Maine to prohibit GPS tracking of employees.
Maine’s anti-stalking law prohibits using GPS tracking to cause a reasonable person to suffer emotional distress or fear injury to themselves, their property, or an animal in their possession.
Maryland doesn’t prohibit GPS tracking of employees.
The anti-stalking law in Maryland prohibits using GPS tracking without a person’s knowledge or consent, where doing so would place the person in reasonable fear of injury, assault, death, or serious emotional distress.
There are no state laws in Massachusetts to prohibit GPS tracking of employees.
In Massachusetts, using any electronic communication to convey data, including location data, is illegal if that use would cause a reasonable person to suffer substantial emotional distress.
Michigan law prohibits placing a GPS tracking device on a motor vehicle without the owner’s consent. This law doesn’t restrict GPS tracking on a company-owned vehicle. It also doesn’t address GPS tracking on devices other than motor vehicles.
No person in Minnesota may install a mobile tracking device on a motor vehicle without the driver’s consent or a court order. An exception is made for tracking that assists a driver.
This law doesn’t restrict GPS tracking on company-owned vehicles or GPS tracking on devices other than motor vehicles.
There are no state laws prohibiting or limiting GPS tracking in Mississippi.
Missouri has no state laws prohibiting or limiting GPS tracking.
There are no Minnesota state laws prohibiting or limiting GPS tracking by private persons or businesses.
Montana requires law enforcement officials to obtain a search warrant before accessing GPS tracking data.
Nebraska has no state laws prohibiting or limiting GPS tracking.
In Nevada, there are no state laws prohibiting or limiting GPS tracking.
New Hampshire prohibits government entities from placing GPS tracking on a person or property without a warrant. Individuals are also prohibited from putting GPS tracking on a person or property unless the person gives consent to track themselves or their property.
The law is unclear as to whether it would require employers to obtain employee consent for GPS tracking.
There are no state laws prohibiting or limiting GPS tracking in New Jersey.
New Mexico doesn’t prohibit GPS tracking of employees.
Under New Mexico’s anti-stalking law, it’s illegal to use a device to monitor or surveil a person without consent if doing so causes that person to be in reasonable apprehension of death, harm, or confinement.
Employers in New York may use GPS tracking to monitor employees during business hours.
New York criminal law prohibits using GPS tracking to follow a person without their consent when doing so would cause a reasonable fear of harm to the person’s safety, property, emotional health, or employment.
Read more about New York labor law
The cyberstalking law in North Carolina makes it illegal to use GPS tracking without consent.
The law includes many exceptions—including for GPS tracking installed on a vehicle with the vehicle owner’s permission and GPS tracking by an owner of fleet vehicles. There are also exceptions for law enforcement, parents, guardians, and caregivers.
Read more about North Carolina labor law
There are no state laws in North Dakota that prohibit GPS tracking of employees.
In North Dakota, tracking a person without consent in a way that would cause a reasonable person to be frightened, harassed, or intimidated and serve no legitimate purpose is considered stalking.
Ohio has no state laws prohibiting or limiting GPS tracking.
Read more about Ohio labor law
There are no state laws in Oklahoma that prohibit GPS tracking of employees.
In Oklahoma, using GPS tracking to follow or harass someone in a way that would cause a reasonable person or their family member to feel frightened, harassed, intimidated, threatened, or molested is a criminal stalking offense.
No state laws in Oregon prohibit GPS tracking of employees, except for tracking an employee’s personal car.
Oregon law prohibits affixing a GPS tracking device to a motor vehicle without the owner’s consent. Exceptions are made for law enforcement and motor carriers.
In Pennsylvania, there are no state laws prohibiting or limiting GPS tracking by private persons or businesses.
However, there are time limits on how long a mobile tracking device may be used during law enforcement investigations in Pennsylvania.
It’s illegal in Rhode Island to place a GPS tracking device on a motor vehicle without the consent of the driver and all vehicle occupants if the device was placed to track any of the vehicle’s occupants. The law includes exceptions for business vehicles driven by employees of the business.
South Carolina has no state laws prohibiting or limiting GPS tracking.
No South Dakota state laws prohibit or limit GPS tracking by private persons or businesses.
Tennessee state law doesn’t prohibit GPS tracking of employees, except for tracking an employee’s personal car without consent.
Read more about Tennessee labor law
Like Tennessee, Texas law doesn’t prohibit GPS tracking of employees, except for tracking a worker’s personal vehicle without their consent.
Read more about Texas labor law
Utah doesn’t prohibit GPS tracking of employees, except for tracking an employee’s personal car without consent.
There are no state laws in Vermont that prohibit GPS tracking of employees.
Vermont’s anti-stalking law prohibits monitoring or surveilling a person that would cause a reasonable person to fear for their safety or experience substantial emotional distress.
Virginia doesn’t prohibit GPS tracking of employees.
In Virginia, it’s illegal to place a GPS tracking device to track the location of any person through intentional deception and without the person’s consent. This includes applying GPS tracking to a person, an object, or a vehicle.
There are several exceptions in the law. These include law enforcement officers, parents or guardians of a minor, caregivers of vulnerable adults, owners of fleet vehicles, and registered private investigators.
There are no state laws in Washington that prohibit GPS tracking of employees.
Washington law prohibits placing—or directing someone else to place—a GPS tracking system if it causes the tracked person to suffer substantial emotional distress or fear injury to themselves, their property, or another person.
There are no state laws prohibiting or limiting GPS tracking in West Virginia.
It’s illegal in Wisconsin to place a GPS device on a vehicle without the owner’s consent. Using GPS tracking to monitor a person’s movement without consent is also illegal in Wisconsin.
However, the law specifically allows employers or business owners to track motor vehicles owned by the business.
There are no state laws in Wyoming that prohibit GPS tracking of employees.
Wyoming’s anti-stalking law prohibits using a GPS tracking device to surveil another person without their consent if doing so would cause a reasonable person to suffer substantial emotional distress or fear for the safety of themselves, their property, or another person.
Consequences for Misuse of GPS Trackers
As many GPS tracking laws are criminal statutes, the consequences for deliberately misusing GPS trackers can be severe. Individuals may be subject to fines or even jail time, with charges ranging from misdemeanors to felonies. Businesses in California that violate state law involving GPS tracking can even be stripped of their license to operate in the state.
Most states haven’t adopted laws limiting GPS tracking of employees. However, misusing GPS tracking could erode employee trust. It could also encourage claims that GPS tracking is used to support other illegal activities, such as harassment or discrimination.
For business owners like you, it’s important to communicate your reasons for GPS tracking. Employees who understand how and why GPS tracking is in place are more likely to support its use.
🧠 Did You Know?
Effective employee GPS tracking through a dedicated employee app such as Connecteam can make it easier to keep your business compliant with time tracking and payroll laws by ensuring your time records are accurate.
How to Securely Track Employees’ GPS Location
It’s 100% possible to monitor employees’ locations with a GPS tracking app without breaking the law.
There are a few best practices to remember when you use GPS tracking at your business. Be sure to:
- Evaluate the state laws related to GPS tracking for every state in which your business operates.
- Limit tracking to circumstances with a legitimate business need, such as during an employee’s assigned work hours.
- Adopt a GPS tracking employee policy outlining your business reasons for tracking, when employees will be tracked, and how employee data will be protected. Have employees acknowledge their understanding of the policy by signing a digital or physical copy of it.
Secure, streamlined tracking with Connecteam
When you decide to implement GPS tracking at your company, consider using Connecteam as your employee tracking app.
Our platform includes built-in GPS location tracking software that lets you verify workers’ locations while they’re on the clock. You can see their real-time locations or view where they’ve been throughout their shift.
You can also create custom geofences around work sites, restricting clock-in and clock-out to those designated areas. Connecteam will send workers push notifications when they enter or exit a geofence, reminding them to punch in or out. You can even set Connecteam to automatically clock employees out when they leave a geofence.
In addition, Connecteam’s time clock auto-records workers’ punch-in and out locations to offer you better oversight. The time clock tracks employees’ time down to the second, and the software automatically generates digital timesheets using the recorded time data. You can then easily review timesheets, cross-reference them with workers’ location data, and correct any errors before running payroll.
Importantly, Connecteam never records employees’ locations when they’re off the clock. Plus, you can select which positions or employees at your company require GPS tracking and change these rules anytime.
GPS tracking laws vary from state to state in the US, and no single rule applies everywhere. Some states have rules to prevent unwanted tracking, usually to prevent criminal acts like stalking, but most state laws don’t directly mention businesses or business owners.
Many companies use employee tracking apps to verify workers’ real-time locations and record their worked hours accurately. To bring the benefits of GPS location tracking to your business, choose technology that will keep you compliant with legal requirements in your area and limit tracking to within business hours. With an app like Connecteam, you can respect your employees’ privacy, follow the law, and reap the benefits of GPS tracking.
Is tracking legal in the US?
There are no US state or federal GPS tracking laws that prohibit GPS tracking for all purposes. Most states that limit the use of GPS tracking do so to prevent criminal activities like stalking.
Is your employer allowed to track your location?
Most US states allow employers to track their employees’ locations if it’s for a valid business purpose during work hours. A few states, such as California, require employers to gain employee consent before they begin location tracking.
How do I track an employee’s location?
The easiest way to track employees’ locations while they’re working is by using GPS tracking technology. This is especially helpful if you have employees in the field or across multiple work locations.
Consider using a platform like Connecteam—which records employees clock-in and clock-out locations, tracks their locations throughout their shifts, and shows you their locations in real time at any given moment. For extra privacy and security, Connecteam tracks employee locations only while they’re working.
The information presented on this website about GPS tracking laws in the United States is intended to be accurate and informative. However, laws and regulations can change and may vary depending on individual circumstances. While we have made every effort to ensure the information provided is up-to-date and reliable, we cannot guarantee its completeness or accuracy. Therefore, we strongly recommend that readers seek guidance from their legal department or a qualified attorney to ensure compliance with applicable laws and regulations. Please note that we cannot be held liable for any actions taken or not taken based on the information presented on this website.