Continuous alcohol monitoring (CAM) devices have been used in North Carolina since 2005. The more common CAM devices are the utilized in cars, only allowing the automibile to start after the driver passes an installed breathalyzer such as the Monitech device. However, in light of new legislation such as "Laura's Law" and The Justice Reinvestment Act, which take effect January 1, 2012, CAM devices are becoming more widely used.
In particular, a less commonly known CAM device has become increasingly popular and available to criminal Defendants. Ankle alcohol monitoring devices, which are also known as Secure Continuous Remote Alcohol Monitoring (SCRAM) bracelets, use infrared technology to ensure that it the device remains attached to a human body and has not been tampered with. Since the body passes a small percentage of consumed alcohol through perspiration, the device uses an electro chemical fuel cell to measure the number of alcohol molecules that are produced through the sweat glands. The data is then sent to a computer, which reports how much alcohol has been consumed and how recently it was consumed.