What is a GPS jammer?

GPS jammer – What is GPS anyway?

The abbreviation GPS has become a common term in the context of positioning in German-speaking countries. GPS stands for Global Positioning System, a satellite system operated by the US Department of Defense for worldwide positioning. It has established itself as the most important positioning method in the world.

GPS jammers – How do they work?

As is so often the case, great inventions have great opponents. In this case, however, even a very small enemy is enough to interfere with the GPS signal. As the distance from the receiver device to the responsible satellites is more than 20,000 km, the signal strength is correspondingly weak. A finger-sized device, the GPS Jammer, is sufficient to overlay such a weak signal. Such a jammer can significantly disrupt or even completely block signals such as radio waves, televisions, mobile communications or the GPS signal within a 10 meter radius.
The actual waves are superimposed and rendered unusable with little energy input. To jam, you can transmit on the same or a neighboring frequency. The only things to consider are the field strength and the type of disturbed wave.
So if someone owns such a device and intends to render a certain GPS signal unusable, it is sufficient to place the GPS jammer in the immediate vicinity of the receiving device to make GPS positioning impossible.

GPS spoofing – professional signal deception

A similar but far more advanced method is GPS spoofing (also known as pseudolite). The aim here is not to disrupt, but to deceive one or more GPS signals. Using the same frequency as the GPS satellites, false location data is transmitted to deceive the receiving device. However, far more precise information (e.g. atomic clock, distance to the receiving device, digital signal processing) is required for such a signal overlay.

Consequences of the use of signal jammers

Do you think it’s a worrying fact that there are devices that could interfere with your tracker’s GPS signal? Then you should know that even the purchase of such a jammer has serious consequences under criminal law, not to mention its targeted use. In the case of frequency interference, German law is clear: anyone wishing to use frequencies needs a frequency allocation from the Federal Network Agency. Unauthorized sending is punishable by fines of up to €1000. Irrespective of this, interfering with a certain frequency is dangerous: sensitive instruments such as ambulances or the traffic management system also make use of the GPS signal. Anyone who makes a mistake here, whether intentionally or not, will be punished much more severely.

Is there a solution to the GPS jammer problem?

Unfortunately, there is still no real solution that solves the problem of signal interference using GPS jammers. The possibility of using so-called direction-sensitive receiving antennas is complex and not really fully developed. This technology is currently only used in particularly security-relevant areas such as the military and aviation. For logistics and transportation companies that have equipped their trucks, vans or cars with GPS technology, however, these antennas are not really an option. So how to deal with the problem of GPS jammers?


Our recommendation: Get yourself a GPS tracker to protect your belongings. After all, you don’t refrain from locking the door or the bike just because there is someone who could pick the lock. There will always be ways for professional thieves to outwit certain security systems.

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