New York City Police Department said Monday that an Apple AirTag was discovered under the hood of a marked squad car in Queens.
The small tracking device, which connects to Apple’s Find My network, was found inside a small plastic bag on the police car on Sunday.
In response to the discovery, NYPD housing director Martine Materasso reminded the department to be cautious in their inspections of marked cars in the face of the nationwide anti-police crackdown. The vehicles should be checked before and after the officers’ rounds.
“Please remain in heightened vigilance given the anti-police sentiment we have been seeing not only here but across the United States,” Materasso wrote in the email to officers, according to the New York Daily News.
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“Keep looking out for each other and be safe,” Materasso continued.
Apple announced last year that it was working with law enforcement to prevent “unwanted tracking” from the use of AirTags.
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“AirTag was designed to help people find their personal belongings, not to track anyone or anyone else’s property, and we strongly condemn any malicious use of our products,” Apple wrote in a statement in February. “Unwanted tracking has long been a societal concern, and we took this concern seriously when designing AirTag.”
The company said abuse of AirTags is rare, but “each instance is one too many.”
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“Each AirTag has a unique serial number, and paired AirTags are associated with an Apple ID. Apple may provide paired account information in response to a subpoena or valid law enforcement request,” Apple wrote in its statement. “We have successfully worked with them on cases where information we provided was used to trace an AirTag back to the perpetrator who was then arrested and charged.”