Companies welcome input from industry participants and advocacy groups on a draft specification to alert users in the event of suspected unwanted tracking

Location-tracking devices help users find personal items like their keys, purse, luggage, and more through crowdsourced finding networks. However, they can also be misused for unwanted tracking of individuals.
Today Apple and Google jointly submitted a proposed industry specification to help combat the misuse of Bluetooth location-tracking devices for unwanted tracking. The first-of-its-kind specification will allow Bluetooth location-tracking devices to be compatible with unauthorised tracking detection and alerts across iOS and Android platforms. Samsung, Tile, Chipolo, eufy Security, and Pebblebee have expressed support for the draft specification, which offers best practices and instructions for manufacturers, should they choose to build these capabilities into their products.
“Apple launched AirTag to give users the peace of mind knowing where to find their most important items,” said Ron Huang, Apple’s vice president of Sensing and Connectivity. “We built AirTag and the Find My network with a set of proactive features to discourage unwanted tracking — a first in the industry — and we continue to make improvements to help ensure the technology is being used as intended. This new industry specification builds upon the AirTag protections, and through collaboration with Google results in a critical step forward to help combat unwanted tracking across iOS and Android.”
“Bluetooth trackers have created tremendous user benefits, but they also bring the potential of unwanted tracking, which requires industrywide action to solve,” said Dave Burke, Google’s vice president of Engineering for Android. “Android has an unwavering commitment to protecting users, and will continue to develop strong safeguards and collaborate with the industry to help combat the misuse of Bluetooth tracking devices.”
In addition to incorporating feedback from device manufacturers, input from various safety and advocacy groups has been integrated into the development of the specification.
“The National Network to End Domestic Violence has been advocating for universal standards to protect survivors — and all people — from the misuse of Bluetooth tracking devices. This collaboration and the resulting standards are a significant step forward. NNEDV is encouraged by this progress,” said Erica Olsen, the National Network to End Domestic Violence’s senior director of its Safety Net Project. “These new standards will minimise opportunities for abuse of this technology and decrease the burden on survivors in detecting unwanted trackers. We are grateful for these efforts and look forward to continuing to work together to address unwanted tracking and misuse.”
“Today’s release of a draft specification is a welcome step to confront harmful misuses of Bluetooth location trackers,” said Alexandra Reeve Givens, the Center for Democracy & Technology’s president and CEO. “CDT continues to focus on ways to make these devices more detectable and reduce the likelihood that they will be used to track people. A key element to reducing misuse is a universal, OS-level solution that is able to detect trackers made by different companies on the variety of smartphones that people use every day. We commend Apple and Google for their partnership and dedication to developing a uniform solution to improve detectability. We look forward to the specification moving through the standardisation process and to further engagement on ways to reduce the risk of Bluetooth location trackers being misused.”
The specification has been submitted as an Internet-Draft via the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF), a leading standards development organisation. Interested parties are invited and encouraged to review and comment over the next three months. Following the comment period, Apple and Google will partner to address feedback, and will release a production implementation of the specification for unwanted tracking alerts by the end of 2023 that will then be supported in future versions of iOS and Android.
4 comments
  1. Hmm it looks like your website ate my first comment (it was extremely long) so I guess I’ll just sum it up what I had written and say, I’m thoroughly enjoying your blog. I too am an aspiring blog writer but I’m still new to everything. Do you have any suggestions for first-time blog writers? I’d certainly appreciate it.

  2. It?¦s in point of fact a nice and helpful piece of information. I am glad that you simply shared this helpful info with us. Please stay us up to date like this. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Good V I should definitely pronounce, impressed with your website. I had no trouble navigating through all the tabs as well as related information ended up being truly simple to do to access. I recently found what I hoped for before you know it at all. Reasonably unusual. Is likely to appreciate it for those who add forums or something, website theme . a tones way for your client to communicate. Excellent task..

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You May Also Like

sigstore, the free digital signing service for open source supply chain security, gets additional support

Open source software tools and services are often created quickly and out…

Vodafone Partners with Oracle to Accelerate Technology Modernization on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure

Oracle and Vodafone, the largest pan-European and African technology communications company, today…

The Virtual Enterprise: Building a More Connected, Expansive Business

The last two years demonstrated the power of exponential technologies like AI,…

The 5 Ss: enabling future readiness

Which critical issues are keeping government planners and policymakers up at night?…