Apple and Google Team up to Stop Bluetooth Tracking Devices
Listen to the Podcast:
Apple and Google said Tuesday that they are working together to stop lost-and-found devices like AirTags from being used to track people without their permission.
As part of a suggested industry standard, companies would add alerts for third-party Bluetooth trackers that are tracking you without your permission to future versions of iOS and Android.
In 2021, Apple came out with AirTags, which are small chips that can help people find lost things like keys and wallets. It connects to Apple’s network through Bluetooth, so it can link to iOS devices like iPhones, iPads, and Macs from anywhere. But it wasn’t long before people heard that the $30 devices were being used to spy on people without their knowledge. Since then, Apple has added features to its iPhones that let users know when unknown AirTags have been following them for a long time.
Some people think, though, that Apple hasn’t done enough to stop stalkers and criminals from using AirTags to track their victims. This year, an Arkansas law company joined a nationwide lawsuit against the tech giant over security issues.
The news from Tuesday says that Android users may also be warned if AirTag is tracking them without their permission.
The draft plan has been backed by Samsung, Tile, Chipolo, Eufy Security, and Pebblebee, according to an announcement made on Tuesday. The plan will tell manufacturers what they should do if they decide to add the features to their products that track where they are.
Apple and Google said that the specifications for the unwanted tracking alert features would be finished by the end of 2023 and then put “in future versions of iOS and Android.”