Published On: Mon, May 13th, 2019

Botched update crashes hundreds of Netherlands police ankle monitors

This isn’t the first time the Netherlands has had to deal with an outage, albeit not for the same reasons — this one was under police control. A cellular network outage in August 2018 knocked out connections to 450 ankle monitors, forcing a similar scramble.

The wearables are frequently helpful for police by giving them a way to keep tabs on suspects and criminals without having to jail them or place officers nearby. This failure underscores a central problem, though: the monitors are highly dependent on reliable connectivity and software, and even a temporary glitch could put public safety at risk.