We think a lot about the convenience technology offers us with the gadgets we carry around daily. Many of the things we need to interact with the outside world are on a device that fits our palm. So convenient. But beyond that, mobile technology offers us features that take our safety into consideration, too.
Apple is introducing a new safety feature to prevent others from stalking you using accessories like small trackers. Item Safety Alerts resurfaced in beta 3 of iOS 14.5 introduced earlier this month. It will let you know if an unknown device being tracked is “moving with you,” so you can disable it or remove it from your person or your belongings.
The feature looks to be designed to counteract situations where a Find-My compatible device is kept in your pocket or bag without your knowledge so someone can track your movements.
According to Apple Insider, this feature first showed up in iOS 14.3 in late 2020. But because the rumored Apple AirTags wasn’t launched, Apple took out some of the code related to the device before the release.
You’ll supposedly get an alert when a tracker is on you for some time. The notification will read: “This item has been moving with you for a while. The owner can see its location. If you feel your safety is at risk due to this item, contact your local law enforcement. You may need the serial number of this item.”
9to5Mac says Item Safety Alerts will be enabled by default. While you can turn the feature off, Apple warns you against doing so because you won’t be notified if someone unauthorized can see your location.
This feature’s release is in line with Apple opening up its Find My app and its capabilities to third-party accessories (like trackers from companies like Tile and Samsung) and the rumored upcoming launch of the AirTags.
To manage these accessories, there will be a new Items tab in the Find My app coming with iOS 14.5. It will let you keep tabs on your Apple devices alongside other Find My-compatible items.
Apple just rolled out iOS 14.5 beta 4, which adds refinements to the new features the company is introducing. It should be showing up for developers and public beta users soon.
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