Follow unnoticed?  That’s no longer the case with Tracking Detection iOS 17.5

Follow unnoticed? That’s no longer the case with Tracking Detection iOS 17.5

Apple released a new update for the iPhone yesterday: iOS 17.5. One of the most important new features is tracking detection. Tracking detection should ensure that stalkers don’t stand a chance – no matter what brand of tracker they use. But what is it exactly?

Read more after the announcement

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Cooperation with Google

You can keep an eye on your stuff with Apple’s AirTag or other Bluetooth tracker. Put it in your jacket, bag or suitcase and you’ll know exactly where your belongings are: you can track their location on your iPhone. But you can also put the tracker in someone else’s jacket pocket and then secretly track that person.

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Apple has taken measures for its tracking device to prevent the AirTag hunt. Android also has a different but similar system. But now, Apple and Google have finally joined forces, and it works across both platforms. Using an Android smartphone, you need at least Android 6.0, and on the iPhone iOS 17.5.

What does tracking detection do?

Apple itself describes it as follows in the release notes for iOS 17.5:

Tracking Notifications: Cross-platform tracking detection ensures that users receive notifications when a compatible Bluetooth tracker they don’t own moves with them, regardless of the operating system the device is paired with.

Tracking detection thus helps to detect if someone is secretly following you using a Bluetooth tracker. Has your strange tracking device been moving around with you for hours? Is the owner not near you? You will then receive a so-called “tracking notification” on your phone. You probably already know something like this from Apple’s AirTag. But in the future it will work with more trackers and also with other smartphone brands.

If your phone detects a tracker like this, you can find out what type of device it is, make it beep to make it easier to find, and learn how to turn it off. This will help you stay safe. No one can follow you unnoticed this way. So, it’s a good idea to update your phone to the latest version so you can have this protection – with a little caveat for now.

Does this work right away?

Bluetooth tracker makers have yet to incorporate this functionality. Many of the companies that make these Bluetooth trackers say they also want to work in the new way. This means that their future trackers will also let them know if they move in with someone they don’t know. Apple says in a press release Chipolo, eufy, Jio, Motorola and Pebblebee have already agreed to collaborate in the future.

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