Apple’s tracking device AirTag has made it to the news several times since its launch last year. There have been numerous reports claiming that Apple AirTag is used for stalking purposes. To address this issue of unwanted tracking, Apple AirTag and Find My network accessories have unique Bluetooth identifiers that change frequently. This helps prevent you from being tracked from place to place. The feature alerts you with a notification if an AirTag is travelling with you. However this feature was only limited to the Apple ecosystem. But do you know that Android users can also detect an AirTag near them through the AirGuard app.
Released in July last year, the AirGuard app is developed by researchers from Technical University of Darmstadt in Germany. The app periodically scans your surroundings for potential tracking devices, like AirTags or other Find My devices. With the app, you can play a sound on AirTag and find it easily. You can also view at which locations the device has tracked you.
How does the AirGuard app works
AirGuard uses Bluetooth scans of Android phones to find AirTags and Find My trackers. Every tracker that is found will be saved locally on your device. Whenever a tracker gets detected multiple times, the app recognises it and compares the locations where the tracker has been detected. If a tracker is detected at least 3 times and the locations have changed (to make sure it’s not your neighbour or family member) the app sends you a notification. If the tracker is an AirTag you can play a sound to find it.
Recently, Apple also announced changes and new features to stop unwanted stalking. With iOS 15.4 beta, Apple has added a new message to the AirTag setup screen which advises users that “using this item to track people without their consent is a crime in many regions around the world.”