AirTags Can Be Used for Covert Stalking; Apple’s Measures to Prevent Them Are Not Enough, Says Report


Apple has safety measures in place to prevent its AirTags from being used for malicious activities. However, a new report claims that these measures are not sufficient to prevent covert stalking and provides a scenario on how Apple’s trackers might not be as safe as they are intended to be.

In a Pretended Stalking Scenario, Reporter Says Apple’s AirTags Are a ‘New Means of Inexpensive, Effective Stalking’

The Washington Post’s Geoffrey A. Fowler attempted to create a stalking scenario where his colleague, Jonathan Baran. Baran paired an AirTag with his iPhone and slipped the tracker into Fowler’s backpack. Baran later tracked Fowler for an entire week across San Francisco Bay. Fowler says that he received multiple alerts from the AirTag on his iPhone, and while that is extremely helpful, there are other things to note.

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For instance, the reporter says that the AirTag’s alarm only rang three days after being in his backpack, then 15 seconds of light chirping. Also, though an iPhone alerted Fowler that he was being tracked, Android users would not receive the same warning. This would put such users at a heightened risk. He also points out that after an AirTag was placed in his bag, Fowler’s colleague was able to know his precise location, which can be a little scary if you think about it.

When riding a bike around San Francisco with the AirTag in possession, the tracker would update Fowler’s location once every few minutes with a range of around half a block. When he returned home, his colleague’s app reported the exact address since the tracker belonged to the colleague. Of course, Fowler admits that Apple has made efforts to curb activities stalking by actually sending notifications to your iPhone, something that Tile’s trackers do not do for iOS or Android.

Then again, as we mentioned above, if the same scenario was practiced on an Android user, they would have no way of knowing that they are being tracked. Whether this is another way of forcing customers to enter Apple’s ecosystem to prevent themselves from being stalked is another story. You can check out The Washington Post’s entire report by clicking on the link below and share your thoughts on what you think about this little activity.

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News Source: The Washington Post