Teen AirDrops images of airsoft gun to passengers on United flight, plane evacuated [u]

Posted:
in General Discussion edited July 23
In what appears to be an ill-conceived prank, a teenager on a United Airlines flight out of San Francisco used Apple's AirDrop to send "inappropriate pictures" to fellow passengers, causing personnel to evacuate the plane.

AirDrop


As recounted by Christopher J. Beale, who claims his mother was on board the flight Thursday, an unnamed teen sent images of an airsoft gun to nearby iPhones via AirDrop, reports NBC's Bay Area affiliate.

Bound for Orlando, United Airlines Flight 2167 was preparing to leave the gate when passengers reported the incident, said airport spokesperson Doug Yakel. Everyone aboard was forced to disembark and go through a second screening process "out of an abundance of caution," Yakel said.

The teen also made threats, according to Beale's account, as relayed by Gizmodo.

It was determined the photos were taken at an earlier date and not at the airport, and the teen did not have the gun on his person. Passengers reboarded after officials carried out a security inspection of the plane, and the teen was banned from the flight. It is unclear if he is facing further legal ramifications for his actions.

How the teen was identified is unclear. As Gizmodo notes, iOS users can anonymously send pictures, video and other media through AirDrop simply by changing their device name in system settings. It is theorized that the culprit forgot this crucial step or simply had no concerns about being caught.

Recipients of AirDropped media are shown a preview of the image or video, which they can either accept or decline. This mechanic has caused problems in the past, as pranksters or unsavory characters can use the feature to present inappropriate content to victims.

Users can secure AirDrop and prevent receipt of unwanted photos by limiting AirDrop discoverability to known contacts. First, open Control Center by swiping down from the top right corner of the screen (iPhone X and newer) or up from the bottom of the screen (iPhone 8 and older), then press and hold the Bluetooth icon and tap on the AirDrop icon. Select Contacts Only or Receiving Off.

The same AirDrop settings can be found under General > AirDrop in the Settings app.

A previous version of this story incorrectly stated that Christopher J. Beale claimed he was a passenger on the United flight.

Read on AppleInsider
killroy

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 20
    payecopayeco Posts: 448member
    What an idiot. 
    mattinozkillroylam92103pulseimagesseanjwatto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 20
    DAalsethDAalseth Posts: 1,725member
    Stupid Is as Stupid Does
    sbdudemattinozkillroylam92103macseekerpulseimagesseanjwatto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 20
    sbdudesbdude Posts: 82member
    DAalseth said:
    Stupid Is as Stupid Does

    Took the words right out of my mouth.
    killroywatto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 20
    mattinozmattinoz Posts: 1,633member
    I take he didn’t want to go to were he was being sent. 
    killroyspock1234caladanianpulseimageswatto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 20
    Shockingly, teenagers do stupid things.
    How you fix teenage stupidity is with the right kind of penalty. it is not by putting them into juvie to make them hone their stupid skills and prepare them for prison system revolving door. You give them 6 months of weekend nasty garbage can scrubbing at the airport. That is was can hopefully fix the teenage mind before teenager becomes adult living on the destructive teat of criminal justice inc.

    To the other point, standard media clickbait nonsense. Apple bad + Airdrop bad = please click link. 
    mattinozJanNLgilly33dewmemuthuk_vanalingamleehammwatto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 6 of 20
    markbyrnmarkbyrn Posts: 646member

    Settings - General - Airdrop - Contacts Only 

    macseekermattinozapplguydewmeFileMakerFellerwatto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 20
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 6,957member
    markbyrn said:

    Settings - General - Airdrop - Contacts Only 

    Why don’t people know this?
    What’s the default setting?
    gilly33pulseimagesFileMakerFellerwatto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 20
    gilly33gilly33 Posts: 374member
    markbyrn said:

    Settings - General - Airdrop - Contacts Only 

    Duh?! Geez people. I like the community service at the airport comment. Add some toilet cleaning at the airport with that. 
    edited July 24 dewmemuthuk_vanalingamleehammwatto_cobra
  • Reply 9 of 20
    Rayz2016 said:
    markbyrn said:

    Settings - General - Airdrop - Contacts Only 

    Why don’t people know this?
    What’s the default setting?
    For me and at least a few other people I know setting to Contacts Only makes it so nobody can see my iPhone when they attempt to AirDrop, even when my contact info is in their Contacts. 

    This even happens with my wife and I. If either of us isn’t set to Everyone then the other iPhone never shows it as an available AirDrop target. 
  • Reply 10 of 20
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 9,462member
    payeco said:
    What an idiot. 
    Teenager’s brains are still a pile of mush and they don’t think things through. But yes, what an idiot.
    thtwatto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 20
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 23,171member
    Rayz2016 said:
    markbyrn said:

    Settings - General - Airdrop - Contacts Only 

    Why don’t people know this?
    What’s the default setting?
    Probably because it's an IMO non-obvious option for a feature not widely understood under "General Settings" instead of its own header. Regulars here would know, mom and pop might not. Call me Pop if you wish because I never noticed it. In fairness, Android's Nearby Share (descriptive name at least) option locations are no clearer and probably even less understood.

    But with all that said the default appears to be "Contacts", and I don't believe I had ever changed it even by mistake, so kudos Apple if so. 

    EDIT and off-topic: It takes forever to do an iOS update, just now installing 14.7. I'll fix breakfast while waiting, maybe even time to clean up afterward. /s
    EDIT 2: Oh goody, now I'm seeing recommendations that I don't update, with 14.7 being too buggy for tastes. Whatever. A few more weeks and 15 will be out. I'll live with it. Oh and still "updating" with apparently quite awhile to go.
    edited July 24
  • Reply 12 of 20
    Quick show of hands: how many people here are aware that the AirDrop settings are available in ControlCenter by pressing and holding the center of the radio section, right in between the four buttons (Airplane mode, Cellular, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth)? 
    StrangeDaysronncaladanianFileMakerFellerwatto_cobra
  • Reply 13 of 20
    MplsPMplsP Posts: 3,260member
    Rayz2016 said:
    markbyrn said:

    Settings - General - Airdrop - Contacts Only 

    Why don’t people know this?
    What’s the default setting?
    It should be this, but I think the default setting is to accept from anyone 
  • Reply 14 of 20
    indiekidukindiekiduk Posts: 365member
    Parents must be proud
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 15 of 20
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 23,171member
    MplsP said:
    Rayz2016 said:
    markbyrn said:

    Settings - General - Airdrop - Contacts Only 

    Why don’t people know this?
    What’s the default setting?
    It should be this, but I think the default setting is to accept from anyone 
    I did a double-check since my last post and I'm nearly certain the default is "Contacts Only". 
    ronn
  • Reply 16 of 20
    dewmedewme Posts: 3,818member
    gatorguy said:
    Rayz2016 said:
    markbyrn said:

    Settings - General - Airdrop - Contacts Only 

    Why don’t people know this?
    What’s the default setting?
    Probably because it's an IMO non-obvious option for a feature not widely understood under "General Settings" instead of its own header. Regulars here would know, mom and pop might not. Call me Pop if you wish because I never noticed it. In fairness, Android's Nearby Share (descriptive name at least) option locations are no clearer and probably even less understood.

    But with all that said the default appears to be "Contacts", and I don't believe I had ever changed it even by mistake, so kudos Apple if so. 

    EDIT and off-topic: It takes forever to do an iOS update, just now installing 14.7. I'll fix breakfast while waiting, maybe even time to clean up afterward. /s
    EDIT 2: Oh goody, now I'm seeing recommendations that I don't update, with 14.7 being too buggy for tastes. Whatever. A few more weeks and 15 will be out. I'll live with it. Oh and still "updating" with apparently quite awhile to go.
    To expand your point, the “General” settings collection of configuration tweaks seem to be the place where settings that have no other obvious home, a “Miscellaneous Stuff” collection, end up. Ideally, nothing should go in there permanently. After a couple or few releases (at most) and with some user feedback or usage telemetry from UX surveys most of the settings in General should graduate to a real home with an appropriate name and with similarly related settings. Some of the stuff that’s in the General settings has been in there far far too long.

    Grouping and classification of settings should always be about their context, and “general” is where settings that lack context too often go to die. If Apple hasn’t figured out the proper context of certain settings after a few releases, they are simply not trying hard enough, i.e., they are still lacking a proper understanding of how particular settings relate to their customers. I’m assuming Apple has a crack staff of information scientists who understand basic ontological concepts and they also have a massive amount of insight into how their customers actually use Apple products. Maybe they should find a way to bring those smart folks and all that customer knowledge together in the same room. 
    edited July 24 gatorguyFileMakerFeller
  • Reply 17 of 20
    jccjcc Posts: 300member
    I don’t understand why the TSA is not putting idiots on the no fly list. All of these people acting out, doing stupid things in flights should be put on the no fly list. Let them figure out how to get themselves removed.
    jeffharriswatto_cobra
  • Reply 18 of 20
    MplsP said:
    Rayz2016 said:
    markbyrn said:

    Settings - General - Airdrop - Contacts Only 

    Why don’t people know this?
    What’s the default setting?
    It should be this, but I think the default setting is to accept from anyone 
    Definitely!

    When I got my first iPhone I was riding the subway and somebody AirDropped some dick pix. It’s was pretty shocking and funny. I looked around, deleted and it happened again.

    Needless to say I disabled AirDrop from anyone.
  • Reply 19 of 20
    mac_dogmac_dog Posts: 911member
    Shockingly, teenagers do stupid things.
    How you fix teenage stupidity is with the right kind of penalty. it is not by putting them into juvie to make them hone their stupid skills and prepare them for prison system revolving door. You give them 6 months of weekend nasty garbage can scrubbing at the airport. That is was can hopefully fix the teenage mind before teenager becomes adult living on the destructive teat of criminal justice inc.

    To the other point, standard media clickbait nonsense. Apple bad + Airdrop bad = please click link. 
    Agreed. Since the parents can’t seem to do their job properly, an ass-kicking work schedule seems about right. More importantly, someone needs to drill in this kids head the importance of actions, no matter how stupid, have consequences. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 20 of 20
    leehammleehamm Posts: 49member
    Congrats on getting AirDrop to work, at least.
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