TikTok user @kimbreezeh speaks and warns fans of the dangers of Apple’s new tracker.
After receiving a suspicious alert on his phone and contacting police, he received a less-than-satisfactory response from law enforcement.
He went to TikTok to share that an AirTag had been detected near him.
@kimbreezeh had no idea who owned the product or where it was.
“I have been informed that an AirTag has been following me since 5pm,” he said. “He hasn’t told me before, like at 11:30 p.m., but, you know … here he follows me.” “
Al TikTok, which has now been viewed nearly 5 million times, shows the alert to his fans on screen and says the AirTag has followed him home and to the gym.
When he could not find the device in his car, even after taking it to a tire shop, he decided to go to the police.
Police reportedly told him there was nothing illegal about AirTag.
“They would not accept any report because there is‘ nothing to report ’,” he said. ” I am [supposed] call them when someone shows up. This is when they can help me.
Many of the comments in the video were outraged because she had to wait until her situation became even more dangerous before she could report it.
But his claims are based on already stubborn fears about Apple’s ability to prevent bullies from using AirTags to prey on others.
Trackers are easily used by bullies, abusive and ex-dangerous couples to control people they distrust or try to control.
And while Apple claims to have covered its bases to protect consumers, it only takes one person to find a way to circumvent the company’s restrictions to hurt someone.
Apple says AirTags has built-in anti-harassment measures, but do they actually prevent or allow harassment?
With the launch of AirTags, all Apple devices in the “Find My” network are now participating in a tracking system that will be used to track these devices.
If you’re an iPhone user, you can safely receive what they call “AirTag found on the go” if an AirTag that isn’t registered with your Apple ID or another nearby iPhone appears.
If you receive the notification, you can go to the “Find Mine” app and play a sound from the AirTag to locate it.
The above key phrase that worries people is “or another iPhone around.”
The notification only appears if the AirTag owner is not nearby to prevent you from receiving constant notifications whenever you pass near an AirTag owner.
Apple has also thought of protections for Android users. If you’re not an iPhone user and an AirTag has been with you and out of the way of its original owner for three days, it will play a sound that will let you know it’s there.
Despite these precautions, many fear that AirTags would pose a threat to potential victims of harassment.
The company may claim to have covered everything, but it is a long time since someone has chased you without your knowledge.
It seems Apple doesn’t understand exactly how the harassment goes and who does it.
In three out of four cases, the perpetrators are a family member for a victim. And most often they are current or former partners.
Many people live with their bully or need to see them regularly, especially if they share children with them.
It’s not impossible for bullies to avoid the three-day security feature by making sure they’re around their AirTag on a regular basis.
This would reset the timer, which would give fans more time to track someone’s whereabouts.
Monitoring devices and similar technological advances have already made victims of domestic violence and harassment vulnerable.
Rhoberta Shaler, Ph.D., a relationship consultant who works with clients in abusive and conflicted relationships, tells us, “It’s too common for abusers to use tracking and control devices. [in] telephones, cars, hidden cameras and microphones.
According to the researchers, there are at least 200 hundreds of easily accessible applications and services they offer to potential pursuers, from basic location tracking to the ability to collect texts and even record videos in secret.
Two dozen of these apps are explicitly promoted as tools for spying on romantic couples.
Because technology allows for discreet, unobtrusive harassment, many victims don’t even know it’s being tracked, and they would do so if AirTag tags were misused.
It also means that law enforcement cannot keep up with the scale of criminal harassment incidents.
It must also be said that criminal harassment is often a precursor to homicide. Nearly 76% of women murdered by an intimate partner were harassed first and 54% of these victims had previously reported their bully to the police.
The severity of these incidents is already underestimated without Apple making things worse.
What to do if you find an AirTag that doesn’t belong to you.
Apple explained how people can protect themselves if they find an AirTag unknown to their belongings.
If you come across an AirTag that doesn’t belong to you: Touch and hold any phone, tablet, or NFC device on the white side of the AirTag, and tap the notification that appears. This will take you to a website with the AirTag serial number. If the owner has reported missing, you can contact them.
If you receive a notification that says “AirTag has been found to be moving with you”: Touch the message and select “Play sound” to locate the device. Then follow the instructions to disable AirTag.
If you don’t have an Apple device, listen or find an AirTag: You can also keep the device on the label and follow the instructions above.
Shaler tells us that abused people who do not realize they are being harassed can deduce that they are being monitored by following certain patterns of behavior.
“Normally, the victim may notice the abuser’s behavior and questions that will point to the search for information to validate what they have learned from the devices. Of course, direct accusations and twisted narratives are more evident, ”he says.
If you find an AirTag and think you are in immediate danger, feel free to contact law enforcement.
If you or someone you know is suffering from domestic abuse or violence, help is available. Trained volunteers are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, on the national domestic violence hotline, at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233).
If you cannot speak safely, send a text message to LOVEIS at 1-866-331-9474 or log on to thehotline.org.
Alice Kelly is a writer living in Brooklyn, New York. Grab it covering all things social justice, news and entertainment. Follow she on Twitter allowed.
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