Apple AirTags Get Important Anti-Stalking Upgrade

Apple AirTags Get Important Anti-Stalking Upgrade

AirTags are useful devices to help you locate your keys and other items. However, there has been … [+] some concern over AirTags being used for stalking.

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AirTags are useful devices to help you locate your keys and other items. However, there has been some concern over AirTags being used for stalking—after all, it’s pretty easy to slip one into someone’s bag.

This was the subject of an article in The Washington Post, which found by placing one of the small devices in a bag or pocket, a stalker could receive accurate alerts detailing their target’s location.

Apple, of course, doesn’t want the bad press and reputation associated with this use of AirTags, so it offers technology to help detect when an AirTag is travelling with you. The good news is, that feature has just got a whole lot better—if you have the recently launched iOS 16.2, you can now enjoy boosted protection from nefarious users of AirTags. That’s because Apple has released Firmware Update 2.0.24which enables a Precision Finding feature to “locate an unknown AirTag” if it detects one moving with you.

In addition, Apple has enabled notifications detailing when a rogue AirTag is travelling alongside you, with the AirTag itself programmed to emit a noise so you can find it. This firmware update builds on changes already made earlier this year in the 1.0.301 update.

At the same time, another AirTag firmware update 2.0.36 resolves an issue with the accelerometer not activating in certain scenarios.

As I mentioned previously, you need to be running iOS 16.2 to get the update. The latest iPhone upgrade comes with a bunch of great new featuresas well as 35 security fixesso it’s a good idea to apply it if you haven’t already.

Precision Finding also requires a supported iPhone model with Ultra Wideband.

Once you are running iOS 16.2, you just need to ensure your AirTag is near to your iPhone so it can connect with Bluetooth and the firmware will be downloaded automatically.

Staying secure with AirTags

AirTags are cool devices and there are multiple uses for them, but as security experts point out, technology is always at risk from bad people trying to exploit it. “It is inevitable that bad actors will try to abuse technology maliciously, so it is vital that companies like Apple do all they can to help protect people by securing them at the design phase,” says Jake Moore, global cybersecurity advisor at ESET.

He says it is important to update your AirTags and take advantage of the new feature. However, he points out that it is more difficult for Android users to work out when someone is using an AirTag against them—as an app is the only means to find rogue AirTags when using these devices.

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