Over the years, airlines have really let us have a lot when it comes to electronics. We still can’t make phone calls (it’s official now!) but as long as you’re in “airplane mode,” you can still watch your movies, play your games, and even do stuff on the internet (as long as the WiFi stays on) on our phone or tablet.
In the early 2010s, Apple released AirDrop, a way for people with Apple products to transfer files to each other via WiFi or Bluetooth. You can send files to another Apple product as long as you can electronically “see” their device. The options to control who can “see” your product are:
- No one can see your device (read: AirDrop is disabled)
- Only your contacts can see your device
- Everyone can see your device
Y’all, if you’re on a plane (or really, anywhere in public), I strongly suggest you NOT have your device set for everyone to be able to see it. If you do, any stranger can AirDrop you just about anything. That’s how something like this happens (despite the topic, the video is 100% safe for work):
This isn’t the first time an incident like this has happened.
- In 2019, a woman on a Southwest flight was bombarded by inappropriate photos from a stranger on her flight.
- Also in 2019, a JetBlue flight was evacuated when someone sent an image of a suicide vest to several Apple owners on the flight.
- In 2018, a Hawaiian Airlines flight was grounded after a teen accidentally AirDropped a fake crime scene photo to at least 15 of her fellow passengers.
It’s one thing if you’re trying to AirDrop vacation photos to your spouse, or some sort of document to a co-worker. It’s quite another when a stranger AirDrops unsolicited porn or other inappropriate content to you.
By the way Android peeps, you’re not safe either. “Nearby Share” is a much newer program than AirDrop, but it’s available and can do essentially the same thing.
Shut off your AirDrop/Nearby Share if you’re not using it. Or at least set it so only your contacts can “see” your device.
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This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary