What to do if you happen to discover a misplaced AirTag

When you discover an Apple AirTag that belongs to another person, discover ways to assist reunite the misplaced objects with their proprietor utilizing an iOS or Android device–or, easy methods to stop the machine from monitoring you.

Picture: Sarah Tew/CNET

Apple’s AirTag is a simple to make use of machine to trace objects by the Discover My app in your iPhone, iPad, Mac or iCloud account utilizing the iOS community of units. This little machine is helpful to put in a bag or with costly objects that you simply’d prefer to preserve observe of as you go all through your day; it is particularly helpful if you happen to lose the merchandise, as any iOS machine that goes previous the AirTag can anonymously report the situation of the misplaced AirTag to Apple, which is able to then be reported to you contained in the Discover My app. 

AirTag supplies a singular method to observe objects, and it additionally has sturdy security options to maintain the AirTag from getting used to trace individuals quite than private objects. As a result of AirTag is a service, Apple can replace the options and skills remotely. 

When you personal an AirTag, you most likely already learn about its capabilities, however have you learnt what to do if you happen to discover an AirTag that does not belong to you? This tutorial particulars how one can assist reunite misplaced objects with their proprietor whenever you discover an AirTag and easy methods to disable suspicious AirTag units if you happen to consider that somebody is utilizing an AirTag to trace your location with out your permission.

SEE: Learn how to migrate to a brand new iPad, iPhone, or Mac (TechRepublic Premium)

Learn how to discover particulars a few misplaced AirTag

To assist AirTag house owners learn about their misplaced units, you’ll need to have location companies enabled in your iOS machine and linked to both the mobile community or Wi-Fi. When you’re inside close by vary of an AirTag, the situation of that AirTag can be reported again to Apple anonymously after which to the proprietor of that AirTag. This all occurs within the background, and there isn’t any means to make sure that an AirTag proprietor is notified that their tag is discovered.

Apple does not permit somebody who finds an AirTag to see an individual’s contact particulars, however you will get the particular person’s identify, the serial quantity and the final 4 digits of a cellphone quantity or an e mail deal with (if supplied). This may also help you in making certain that the merchandise is correctly returned to the respective proprietor by asking the particular person to supply the final 4 of their cellphone quantity, as an illustration.

As a result of the AirTag makes use of NFC, it is simple to get to this webpage detailing details about the AirTag on both an iOS machine with NFC capabilities (iPhone 6 or newer) or an Android machine with an NFC reader. 

When you’re on an iOS or Android machine that is geared up with NFC performance, carry out these steps:

  1. Faucet and maintain the highest of your iPhone or Android machine to the white aspect of the AirTag.
  2. Faucet the notification that seems on iOS (no notification will seem on Android). This may open an Apple-owned web site that particulars issues just like the serial quantity, the contact data, or a message from the proprietor if the AirTag has been marked as misplaced (Determine A). This allows you to contact the proprietor and assist reunite the misplaced merchandise.

Determine A


This Apple “Discovered” web site exists to show data (if entered by the proprietor of the AirTag) concerning the proprietor to allow them to be reunited with their misplaced objects.

Cory Bohon / TechRepublic.com

If this does not work, you’ll be able to alternatively do the next on iOS units:

  1. Open the Discover My app in your machine.
  2. Faucet Objects after which faucet Determine Discovered Merchandise (Determine B).
  3. Maintain your machine close to the AirTag you want to determine. A notification ought to pop as much as open the webpage that particulars details about that AirTag.

Determine B


When you’re unable to faucet the highest of the AirTag with the NFC touchpoint in your iOS or Android machine, then use the Discover My app to find close by AirTags.

Cory Bohon / TechRepublic.com

Learn how to disable a suspicious AirTag and stop it from monitoring you

Apple designed AirTag with privateness in thoughts. When you discover an AirTag that was suspiciously positioned (i.e., it appears to be like as if somebody is trying to trace you or your property), you’ll be able to simply disable the AirTag.

It an AirTag is discovered transferring with you that is not your AirTag, your iPhone will obtain an AirTag Discovered Transferring With You message in your Lock Display screen–tapping this message will let you play a sound on the AirTag in query. If the AirTag is on an merchandise you are borrowing, you’ll be able to pause this security alert for as much as in the future at a time. If the AirTag is on an merchandise that belongs to a Household Sharing group you are part of, you might be able to flip off this security alert indefinitely.

If the AirTag is suspicious and you are feeling you are at risk by the AirTag being with you and reporting your location to an unknown proprietor, Apple has a method to simply disable the AirTag indefinitely. Comply with these steps:

  1. Find the AirTag you want to disable.
  2. Push down and twist counterclockwise on the again of the AirTag.
  3. Take the quilt off and take away the battery.

After you do that, even if you happen to substitute the battery, the AirTag will now not permit the person to trace it; nevertheless, if the proprietor of the AirTag positioned it in Misplaced Mode, the AirTag can solely ever be re-registered with Discover My by the unique proprietor as a result of as soon as an AirTag is positioned into Misplaced Mode, it’s locked utilizing Activation Lock much like iOS.

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