Security

Find Hidden AirTags Using Apple’s New Android Tracker Detect App

By TechNadu Staff / December 15, 2021

Android owners can now search for AirTags through the Tracker Detect app, which was introduced by Apple as an anti-stalking feature for iOS in March, letting users can scan for and detect unknown AirTags. At the moment, the app doesn't automatically scan for foreign AirTags in proximity, but when people perform a scan and find a device, they can tap a button to make the suspicious Tags play a sound.

According to the app's description on the Play Store, "Tracker Detect looks for item trackers that are separated from their owner and that are compatible with Apple’s Find My network."

source: Apple

As a safety tool, Tracker Detect is designed to check for any item trackers with Apple's Find My network, and it can find your own AirTag but also one that was dropped in your belongings to track you. The app is being promoted as a safety feature, but it's also a way for Apple to broaden its Find My network.

A spokesperson for Apple told TechCrunch in an email, confirming the new app’s launch:

AirTag provides industry-leading privacy and security features and today we are extending new capabilities to Android devices. Tracker Detect gives Android users the ability to scan for an AirTag or supported Find My enabled item trackers that might be traveling with them without their knowledge.

Android users are required to initiate the scanning process manually. It will display "Unknown AirTag" if it finds the tracker. In addition, the tracker lets you play a sound that helps you find it - however, that only works if it has been near for at least ten minutes. Apple then provides you with an NFC option to read the AirTag and explains how to remove the battery. Apple products such as the iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch come already equipped with this scanner. If it detects an AirTag you do not own, a message will pop up - "AirTag Found Moving With You."

As far as when you'd use this app, Apple says, "If you think someone is using AirTag or another device to track your location, you can scan to try to find it." The truth is, someone could track people with the Apple AirTags, but on conditions.

This does a great deal towards solving one of the significant privacy concerns with AirTags, though it is not a perfect solution. However, it's a step forward for Android users who think something might be wrong.



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