People on Electronic Monitoring

People On Electronic Monitoring 786x786


Electronic monitoring (EM) is a form of digital surveillance that tracks people’s physical location, movement, or other markers of behavior (such as blood alcohol level). It is commonly used in the criminal legal system as a condition of pretrial release or post-conviction supervision and for people in civil immigration proceedings who are facing deportation.

EM has been shown to carry substantial emotional and physical harms, place onerous restrictions on people’s lives, compromise people’s privacy, and present an ongoing threat of incarceration. However, in contrast to other aspects of incarceration and community supervision, there is no national survey or reporting requirement for the number of people on EM. This report fills a gap in understanding around the size and scope of EM use in the United States.

Key Takeaway

Vera researchers collected data from criminal legal system agencies in all 50 states and more than 500 counties—as well as from federal courts, the Federal Bureau of Prisons, and the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)—to produce the most comprehensive count of the national EM population to date.

Key Facts