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New Windows 11 Phone Link Feature could Easily be Abused by Cyberstalkers

Microsoft recently released the Phone Link feature for iOS to all Windows 11 users with iMessage support in 39 languages across 85 markets in the world.

Phone Link, which has existed for a while, allows users to connect their Android phone to their PC through an internet connection.

However, app developer Certo Software said the new Windows 11 feature raises concerns about potential security lapses that could be exploited by cyberstalkers to target iPhone users, according to Indo-Asian News Service.

Cyberstalkers can also easily set up the app on someone else’s iPhone without a clear indication of their data being shared. This type of cyberstalking can be used by abusive partners, parents, or friends to track a victim’s location.

According to a report, these people with physical access to someone else’s iPhone can also set up Phone Link with their own Windows computer and monitor their iMessages and phone calls without the victim becoming aware. The stalker just needs to scan a QR code on their PC screen with the victim’s iPhone to establish a Bluetooth connection and then use it to spy on them.

For that reason, Certo Software suggests that you routinely check what Bluetooth devices your iPhone automatically pairs with. Then, if you don’t recognize one, you can unpair your device by following the steps below.

  1. Open Settings
  2. Tap Bluetooth
  3. Tap the icon next to the unknown device
  4. Tap Forget This Device

But fret not, “We’re constantly on the lookout for new cyber threats so we can help cell phone users keep on top of their mobile security. In the last few weeks, several of our users have reported that cyberstalkers have been using Phone Link to spy on their iPhones,” the UK-based Certo Software company said.

Regardless, you should always monitor which apps have been installed on your phone. Apple’s App Library features a section dedicated specifically to recently added apps.

Another great feature that was recently introduced to iOS 16 is called Safety Check. You can locate it in your settings app, and this feature allows users to review and manage what information is being shared with other people and apps.

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