Innocent App, Serious Consequences: How AirDrop Turned Flying into a Dangerous Adventure
The iPhone function has become a weapon of terror on board the aircraft.
A few days ago it became known about the emergency landing of the flight Southwest Airlinesen route from Las Vegas to Hawaii. After takeoff, passengers on board began receiving photographs of the bomb allegedly planted on the aircraft. Some attacker used the function AirDrop from Applewhich allows you to send files to nearby devices.
After staying in the air for about 1 hour and 50 minutes, the plane changed course and landed safely at Oakland International Airport at approximately 12:49 p.m., according to FlightAware.
Alameda County Police officers met the plane upon arrival and assisted with the evacuation of the passengers. Specially trained dogs were brought in to thoroughly examine the cabin and about 300 suitcases on board. Fortunately, no suspicious devices were found during the search.
No arrests have yet been made, but the case is under investigation by the FBI. The authorities are trying to establish the source and motives of the false threat.
The Alameda County Police Department and the San Francisco FBI have not yet commented.
This is far from the first time AirDrop has been abused on board. Recall that in September last year, the commander of the Southwest Airlines aircraft threatened abort takeoff if passengers don’t stop sharing obscene photos.
Another incident occurred in February 2023, when a schoolboy horrified passengers and provoked canceling an American Airlines flight by simply changing the name of your iPhone to “I have a bomb” in AirDrop settings.
Due to a number of similar incidents, Apple has made changes to AirDrop settings to help prevent unwanted file transfers. So, starting with iOS 16.2, users have a 10-minute limit on receiving content from any sender. After this time, the system automatically switches to protection mode, accepting files only from people in the contact list.