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Massachusetts police warn parents about Apple's new iPhone iOS 17 feature

Apple urges iPhone, iPad users to update operating systems
Apple urges iPhone, iPad users to update operating systems 00:18

DIGHTON – Several police departments in Massachusetts are sharing a warning for parents about a new Apple software update.

Police in Dighton and Andover were among those issuing a warning on social media following the recent iOS 17 software release.

"If you have an iPhone and have done the recent Apple iOS 17 update, they have set a new feature called NameDrop defaulted to ON. This feature allows the sharing of your contact info just by bringing your phones close together," police posted.

If two devices come close enough, a NameDrop prompt will appear on both phone screens, allowing users to choose if they want to share and receive contact cards.

How to turn off NameDrop

The departments suggested parents turn this default off by going to settings, then general. From there, you can select AirDrop, then "Bringing Devices Together," and toggle it to off.

Police suggested parents change the setting on their children's phones, iPads and other Apple devices.

Why could name NameDrop be dangerous?

Tech and cyber security expert Alan Crowetz told CBS Philadelphia the feature can be especially dangerous for children.

"If a stranger walks by your child and gets their contact information," Crowetz, with InfoStream, said, "they have their email and we've seen how the bad guys, the pedophiles and whatnot really take advantage of email, phone number for texting... From a cybersecurity point, this is a major red flag."

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