Apple and Google working to stop unwanted AirTags tracking. The proposal of both Apple and Google would notify users if an unknown Bluetooth tracker is traveling with them, no matter the type of phone they have with them.
Apple and Google AirTags Tracking
Companies like Apple and Google have now teamed up on a proposed industry specification that is aimed at combatting the safety risks associated with AirTags as well as other Bluetooth-enabled tracking devices. The companies in question announced on Tuesday that the new standard requires the implementation of “unauthorized tracking detection and alerts” across a host of Android and iOS devices.
The proposed specification here lists a host of best practices for the creators of Bluetooth tracking devices, which are supposed to help stop the “misuse” of location trackers that put users at the risk for stalking, harassment, and also theft. And as outlined in the document, the unwanted tracking detection should be able to “detect and alert individuals” when a tracker that has separated from its owner is traveling with them and to also provide instructions on how to find and also disable the device.
Other firms that make similar tracking devices, such as Tile, Chipolo, Eufy Security, Samsung, and Pebblebee, already are on board with the proposed standard from the companies.
Privacy Advocates Have Expressed Concerns over the Safety of Tracking Devices
Ever since the release of Apple’s AirTag back in 2021, privacy advocates have expressed concerns over the safety of the device. In the previous year, The Verge spoke with Erica Olsen of the National Network to End Domestic Violence, who stated that tracking devices had been a problem for many years prior to the release of the AirTag.
Apple however responded by improving its unknown AirTag alerts on iPhone and then creating an app that helps to scan for unwanted trackers on Android. Olsen in today’s statement, says, “These new standards will minimize opportunities for abuse of this technology and decrease the burden on survivors in detecting unwanted trackers. We are grateful for these efforts and look forward to continuing to work together to address unwanted tracking and misuse.”
What Apple Has To Say about the New Development
“We built AirTag and the Find My network with a set of proactive features to discourage unwanted tracking — a first in the industry — and we continue to make improvements to help ensure the technology is being used as intended,” Apple’s vice president of sensing and connectivity, Ron Huang, in a statement stated. “This new industry specification builds upon the AirTag protections, and through collaboration with Google results in a critical step forward to help combat unwanted tracking across iOS and Android.”
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