New iOS 14 feature to prevent AirTags stalking revealed
It’s called ‘Item Safety Features’
What you need to know
- Apple has a feature in iOS 14 to stop someone stalking you with AirTags.
- Item Safety Features will prevent an unknown tracking item from broadcasting your location.
Spotted by Benjamin Mayo in the latest iOS 14.5 beta, the new feature in the latest beta is called ‘Item Safety Features’, as Ben explains:
Something I hadn’t considered before: new beta includes a Item Safety setting in Find My. This is how Apple is trying to prevent ‘stalking’ with AirTags. If someone secretly hides a tag in your possessions, your phone will notice and warn you about it.
The setting is on by default which makes sense, but the fact you can turn it off at all probably means that this fires false positive alerts in some circumstances.
Something I hadn’t considered before: new beta includes a Item Safety setting in Find My. This is how Apple is trying to prevent ‘stalking’ with AirTags. If someone secretly hides a tag in your possessions, your phone will notice and warn you about it. pic.twitter.com/NVJyAZlthw
— Benjamin Mayo (@bzamayo) March 4, 2021
It seems clear the feature is designed to stop someone from dropping an AirTag into your pocket or a bag without your permission or knowledge, before using it to follow you or keep track of your location. The feature will be able to distinguish between tracking devices like AirTags that are paired to your iPhone or Apple ID, and ones that are not, which is very reassuring.
Not just meant for AirTags, it seems reasonable to assume the setting will work with all items in the ‘Find My’ ecosystem, including Bluetooth Trackers from Tile, Chipolo, and more.
Apple is expected to unveil its AirTags very soon, possibly at a virtual event later this month.
Users have previously noted that Apple has messages in place for users who think their safety might be at risk regarding tracking devices like AirTags.
It looks like Apple is addressing safety/privacy concertns if you think someone placed an AirTag in your stuff with this line: “If you feel your safety is at risk due to this item, contact your local law enforcement. You may need the serial number of this item.” https://t.co/SiZPNhAG28
— Steve Moser (@SteveMoser) November 13, 2020