Is Unlocked’s Peepers a Real Tracking Software?

Netflix’s ‘Unlocked’ is a South Korean film directed by Kim Tae-joon. It is loosely based on author Akira Shiga’s 2017 Japanese novel ‘Sumaho O Otoshita Dake Na No Ni.’ The crime thriller film stars Chun Woo-hee, Im Si-wan, and Kim Hee-won in the lead roles and tackles the theme of modern cyber security. In the movie, notorious serial killer Jun-Yeong uses software called Peepers to stalk his targets. The software allows Jun-Yeong complete access to his target’s smartphone. If you are wondering whether Peepers in ‘Unlocked’ is an actual tracking software, here is everything you need to know! SPOILERS AHEAD!

Peepers is a Fictional Element

In ‘Unlocked,’ protagonist Na-Mi loses her phone while returning home after a night of partying. The smartphone falls into the hands of Jun-Yeong, who uses the device to stalk Na-Mi. However, after Jun-Yeong fails to unlock the smartphone by cracking the password, he smashes the screen instead. Eventually, Jun-Yeong instructs Na-Mi to get the phone repaired at his repair shop. As a result, Jun-Yeong uses the opportunity to install software known as Peepers on Na-Mi’s smartphone. Later, Jun-Yeong installs the same software on Na-Mi’s father’s mobile. Peepers is a type of spyware that allows Jun-Yeong to access his target’s smartphone data.

Spywares are common in reality and are described as malicious software that can gather personal information about a person from a specific device. Hence, the software can be used for hacking. Peepers appears to be fairly standard spyware that can be bought on the internet for a few hundred dollars. The software resembles SMS Peeper, a spyware that allows the user to track text messages on a specific device. However, the film’s iteration of Peepers also has several other features that differentiate it from other real-life spyware. Therefore, it is safe to say that Peepers is fictional software. The name is likely a reference to spyware’s ability to give its user a peak into a specific person’s life.

How Does Peepers Work?

In the film, Peepers is depicted as spyware that needs to be installed on a person’s smartphone either physically or through a malware link. The software then allows the installer complete access to a device that Peepers is installed on. For starters, the app gives a complete first-person view of the victim’s smartphone to the installer. In the movie, we see Jun-Yeong using spyware and receiving a comprehensive visual of Na-Mi’s activities using her smartphone on his cloned mobile.

Similarly, the spyware also allows Jun-Yeong to track Na-Mi’s location, read her texts, and access her mobile’s camera, data files, and call logs. Moreover, Peepers also lets Jun-Yeong send texts and make phone calls from Na-Mi’s smartphone. Using these features, Jun-Yeong wreaks havoc on Na-Mi’s life and destroys her career. Jun-Yeong’s use of Peepers highlights users’ susceptibility to smartphones since the devices are vulnerable to spyware that can steal all their data. As a result, the film is a cautionary tale about protecting one’s personal information, especially the one stored on smartphones.

Read More: Netflix’s Unlocked Ending, Explained: Is Jung-Yeong Dead?