- by theguardian
- 21 Sep 2023
Apple and Google are teaming up to thwart unwanted tracking through AirTags and similar gadgets.
The two companies behind the iPhone and the software that powers Android phones on Tuesday submitted a proposal to set standards for combatting secret surveillance on Bluetooth devices that were created to help people find lost keys, keep tabs on luggage or to locate other things that have a tendency to be misplaced.
Apple, too, has recognized the potential for the devices to be misused. The company has responded by introducing various features, including notifications that warn iPhone owners if a location tag that is not associated with their devices is traveling with them and an app to detect unwanted AirTag tracking for Android devices.
But Apple and Google now want to go further with a new industry standard that they say will help combat surveillance. The companies hope to have a plan in place by the end of this year. The solution, of which the two companies submitted a draft to the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF), an organization that creates standards for the internet, would be distributed through software updates to iPhones and Android phones.
The draft is open to comment from interested parties for the next three months, after which the two companies will work to address and incorporate feedback.
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