Multiple police social media pages on Facebook are warning parents to disable a new feature, “NameDrop,” that was rolled out in the iOS 17.1 update earlier this year.
This new iPhone feature, which is enabled by default with the iOS 17.1 update, can automatically exchange contact information, including pictures, phone numbers, email addresses, and more, by just holding your iPhone next to another iPhone or Apple Watch close together.
Over the weekend, the Middletown Division of Police in Ohio posted a warning on Facebook urging parents to turn off the “NameDrop” feature on their children’s iPhones to prevent the transfer of personal information, such as phone number or email address, and name, to keep them safe.
“PARENTS: Don’t forget to change these settings on your child’s phone to help keep them safe as well,” the Middletown Division of Police wrote in its Facebook post.
“And yes, we know that it allows you to share it and you can refuse but many people do not check their settings and realize how their phone works,” the Oakland County Sheriff’s office wrote in its post.
According to Apple’s support page on NameDrop, the exchange of information doesn’t get completed, if the two iPhone devices are locked or moved away from each other before the NameDrop transfer completes.
The Cupertino giant also added on its support page that NameDrop only works for sending new contact information, and not updating an existing contact in the iPhone.
To disable the “NameDrop” feature on your iPhone or your kid’s iPhone, you need to go to Settings > General > AirDrop > Bringing Devices Together and turn off the toggle switch.