- Apr 12, 2001
The newly released fourth beta of iOS 15.4 introduces the anti-stalking AirTag changes that Apple announced earlier this month, providing a setup warning that using an AirTag or another Find My-linked item to track someone without consent is a crime.
"You can locate this item using the Find My network," reads the setup screen. "Using this item to track people without their consent is a crime in many regions around the world. This item is designed to be detected by victims and to enable law enforcement to request identifying information about the owner."
With this warning, Apple wants to make it clear to those who would use AirTags and Find My-compatible devices from third-party companies as stalking tools that such a use case is illegal and has criminal repercussions. Apple earlier this month said that the warning would be added to an upcoming update.
Apple also said that it would address a bug that was causing confusion around unwanted tracking, a change that is also likely in the new beta. AirPods can cause an "Unknown Accessory Alert" warning that some people were interpreting as a notice from an AirTag. AirTags are not able to display the "Unknown Accessory Detected" messaging, which is caused by AirPods Pro, AirPods Max, third-generation AirPods, and in some cases, a Find My network accessory.
Going forward, Apple is making sure that all accessories properly identify themselves so there is no more confusion about non-AirTag devices.
We have confirmed the messaging changes are in the current iOS 15.4 beta, and Apple has also made some other minor tweaks as well. In the Find My app, there is no longer an option to toggle off "Item Safety Alerts," with Apple instead offering "Customize Find My Notifications" and "Customize Tracking Notifications" options.
At the current time, both of these options redirect to the Notifications options for the Find My app, and it's not clear if Apple will change that in the future with more granular settings to select from.
Later this year, Apple plans to introduce additional anti-stalking measures that include support for Precision Finding for unknown AirTags, display alerts that pop up whenever a sound is played, and louder AirTag sounds.
Article Link: iOS 15.4 Beta 4 Includes AirTags Anti-Stalking Changes