GADGETS

Apple releases Tracker Detect to protect Android users from AirTags stalkers


Apple has released a new Android app designed to help those who don’t have an iOS device find out if someone is using AirTag or another device compatible with Find My to sniff out their location. When the software finds a nearby AirTag that is separate from its owner, it will mark it as “Unknown AirTag”. If it then follows you for 10 minutes, you can use the app to tell the tracker to play a sound, which makes it easier to find. At that point, you can touch the device with your NFC-compatible phone and get instructions on how to remove its battery or otherwise disable it.

You do not need an Apple account to use the app. As mentioned above, it can also detect Find My compatible trackers like. “AirTag provides industry-leading privacy and security features, and today we are expanding new capabilities to Android devices. Tracker Detect gives Android users the ability to scan AirTags or supported Find My-enabled tracking devices that could travel with them without their knowledge, ”an Apple spokesman told Engadget. “We are raising the bar of privacy for our customers and industry and hopefully others will follow.”

The release of Tracker Detect comes after several incidents of bad actors abusing AirTags to spy on people. In Canada, for example, police recently warned of thieves using up. In June, Apple, in a separate effort to curb the abuse, updated its trackers to play sound between eight and 24 hours after being separated from the owner, instead of three days as was the case at launch.

How well Tracker Detect will protect people will depend on how many people take it. Unlike iOS, which sends proactive alerts when it detects faulty AirTags, this is an app you must install on your Android device. Its protections are not built into Android, at least not yet.

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Naveen Kumar

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