On location trackers and unwanted stalking

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Bluetooth trackers like Apple AirTags, Tile trackers, Samsung SmartTags and Chipolo trackers are widely available. These devices are marketed for people to keep track of their belongings. However, it has been reported how these devices are being misused to stalk people. Read more

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Because of their small size, it has been easy for stalkers and abusers to place these devices in purses, cars, bags. What can you do if you are concerned about one of these trackers?

Apple AirTags

Case 1: you have an iPhone

  • Your phone will automatically scan for AirTags in your surrounding and will show you a notification if it detects an unwanted AirTag moving with you. Make sure that the following settings are on:

  • Bluetooth (Settings > Bluetooth)
  • Location Services (Settings > Privacy & Security > Location Services)
  • Tracking Notifications (Settings > Notifications > Tracking Notifications)

Case 2: you have an Android phone (e.g., Google Pixel, Samsung, LG, etc.)

More information is available at https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT212227

Tile trackers

Install the Tile app and use the Scan and Secure feature. You do not need to create an account to use it. Open the app, tap on Scan on the top-right corner, and tap on Scan and Secure.

More information is available at https://tileteam.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/4415473833111

References

[1] April 6th, 2022. Police Records Show Women Are Being Stalked With Apple AirTags Across the Country. https://www.vice.com/en/article/y3vj3y/apple-airtags-police-reports-stalking-harassment

[2] December 6th, 2022. Apple sued by women over AirTag stalking. https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-63880969

[3] September 5th, 2022, ‘I didn’t want it anywhere near me’: how the Apple AirTag became a gift to stalkers. https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2022/sep/05/i-didnt-want-it-anywhere-near-me-how-the-apple-airtag-became-a-gift-to-stalkers