Charlotte Foster


Apple customers worried about safety of new AirTag technology

Apple customers worried about safety of new AirTag technology

Tech giant Apple has copped global criticism after their new gadget held crucial security concerns. 

The AirTag is the latest accessory from Apple, which is a button-sized electronic device that can be attached like a keychain to valuables such as a wallet or keys, and can be linked to your Apple device to help locate the items when lost. 

The Washington Post, among other sceptics of the new tech, pointed out the design flaw of the device after its release in early 2021, warning users it could be “frighteningly easy” for stalkers to take advantage.

A series of tests conducted by online tech reviewers pointed out how easy it could be for stalkers to place the AirTag on someone without their knowledge and then track their whereabouts. 

“AirTags are a new means of inexpensive, effective stalking. I know because I tested AirTags by letting a Washington Post colleague pretend to stalk me,” the review said.

Eva Galperin, cybersecurity director at the Electronic Frontier Foundation, has long advocated for more awareness on the dangers of tracking technology. 

“I don’t expect products to be perfect the moment they hit the market, but I don’t think they would have made the choices that they did if they had consulted even a single expert in intimate partner abuse,” she said.

After an influx of global criticism against the AirTag, Apple’s new iOS 15.2 update has made moves to remedy the possibility of stalking, by giving users access to detect “items that can track me” from their chosen Apple devices. 

Within the Find My app, there is a new “unknown items” option that can scan for rogue devices the user may be unaware of in their vicinity, alerting people to suspicious activity. 

“These are an industry-first, strong set of proactive deterrents,” Kaiann Drance, Apple’s vice president of iPhone marketing, said in an interview. “It’s a smart and tuneable system, and we can continue improving the logic and timing so that we can improve the set of deterrents.”

Image credits: Getty Images

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