Earlier this year, Apple launched its tracking device called AirTag. While they are useful in finding lost items like keys, backpacks and more, there was always this sense of them being misused. It looks like thieves in Canada have been using the AirTags to steal cars. According to multiple online reports, Ontario’s York Regional Police has been warning about how AirTags are being used by thieves.
As per the York Police, what the suspects do is that they leave an AirTag on a vehicle and then they track to the owner’s residence. Once there they just steal the vehicle from the victim’s driveway and flee from the spot.
In the last few months, the police have investigated five incidents where such car theft has happened. The thieves generally put AirTags on high-end vehicles when they are parked in malls or parking lots. AirTags makes it easier to track — in this case — a vehicle.
At the time of the launch of AirTag, Apple did mention what to do if you a user finds an unknown AirTag. In case a user detects an unknown AirTag, they can tap it with their iPhone or NFC-capable device and instructions will guide them to disable the unknown AirTag. However, unless the AirTag is kept in plain sight, it’s really difficult to know if an unknown device is in the vicinity or not.
Apple had also said that iOS devices can detect an AirTag that isn’t with its owner, and notify the user if an unknown AirTag is seen to be travelling with them from place to place over time. “And even if users don’t have an iOS device, an AirTag separated from its owner for an extended period of time will play a sound when moved to draw attention to it,” Apple had explained. However, if you have an Android phone then this feature doesn’t work.