Law enforcement concerned with Apple security as more people tracked with AirTags
PHOENIX (KPHO/KTVK/Gray News) – Apple recently announced plans to add more measures to AirTags to cut down on unwanted tracking.
The Bluetooth devices are designed to track objects such as keys or backpacks, but reports are increasing across the country of the devices being used to stalk people.
Apple’s website says it worked with law enforcement to update AirTag’s safety warnings, but there are concerns the efforts don’t go far enough.
Some of the software updates that will happen later this year include alerting people sooner if a device is suspected to be tracking someone; a louder chirping sound; and instructions on how to find information on the device’s owner and disable the device.
According to KTVK, the Phoenix Police Department has seen nine cases involving AirTags since the tracking devices were launched last April.
Detective Karrie Flanigan with the Mesa Police Department said she’s worked on five cases involving spouses going through divorces or exes stalking each other.
Flanigan doesn’t believe Apple is doing enough to prevent stalking and disagrees with several of their recommendations.
If you receive a notice on your phone that you’re being tracked, Flanigan recommends calling police and not going home to avoid showing the stalker where you live.
Her biggest concern is Apple’s instructions on finding who owns the device and disabling it by removing the battery. Both require touching the AirTag and could damage key evidence.
“Now the stalker knows you just disabled it because you took the battery out, and you put your thumbprint on it. Evidence-wise it completely screws the whole case up,” Flanigan warned.
Notifications will show on Apple devices saying an “unknown accessory was detected near you.” Android users can download an app called “Tracker Detect” to get similar notifications.
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