Apple has announced that it will be making changes to the software of its AirTags with the aim of reducing unwanted tracking.
Several changes will be coming to AirTags in the coming days, as Apple is implementing new privacy warnings that will help cut down unwanted tracking.
For anyone who isn’t in the loop, AirTags were released back in April 2021 and are small Bluetooth trackers that you can attach to your belongings. You can use Apple devices to determine the location of the trackers, making it easier to keep an eye on items like your keys or wallet.
Unfortunately, there have been numerous reports of AirTags being slipped into people’s bags or pockets so that they can be tracked, which is obviously not the way Apple intended for the AirTags to be used.
In a press release about the update, Apple specifically claimed that “we condemn in the strongest possible terms any malicious use of our products”.
The software being brought in will inform the user during the setup of the AirTag that using the device to track people without their consent is a crime, which won’t be able to stop malicious behaviour, but it does show clearly where the company stands on the issue.
It also states that law enforcement will be able to request any identifying information about the owner of the AirTag, and since it is linked to a user’s Apple ID, the person’s email and phone information will be present.
Moreover, the update will bring in improvements to the ‘Unknown Accessory Detected’ alert, which was confusing users. This notification can appear when you’re connected to AirPods Pro, AirPods Max and AirPods 3, but some users were interpreting the message as an AirTag notification.
After the update, the alerts will identify the AirTag directly in the message, so users will know if it is related to AirTags or not.