Army wife uses AirTags to track shady movers

Posted:
in General Discussion edited January 21
An Army spouse says she used an AirTag to keep tabs on her family's belongings during a move when a shady moving truck driver didn't deliver the items on time.

An Apple AirTag
An Apple AirTag


Military members doing permanent change of station (PCS) moves have historically had issues with shippers' accountability of household goods. Shipments often get stalled for weeks or months by contractors, with little or no communications on the location, or the reason why, the goods were lost or delayed. In fact, AppleInsider staffers have dealt with lack of accountability or good tracking of the shipments multiple times.

Military spouse Valerie McNulty told the Military Times that she had heard "horror stories" during transfers from one duty station to another. To keep tabs on her family's belongings during one such move from Fort Carson, Colorado to Fort Drum, New York, McNulty said she slipped an AirTag into one of the boxes prior to the move.

"You hear so many horror stories when it comes to PCSing," she said. "With those stories in mind, and having read about people putting AirTags with some of their [household goods], I decided it would be worth testing the theory."

The AirTag's tracking ability came in handy when the family's household goods weren't delivered on-time. When the expected delivery date of Jan. 7 went by without the family receiving her goods, McNulty contacted her move coordinator.

The coordinator told her that she should expect the delivery the following day, and she was able to confirm that the goods were only a four-hour drive away. However, McNulty said she then received a call from the delivery driver, who told her that he had just picked up the goods in Colorado and that a next-day delivery wouldn't be possible.

When she told him that this wasn't true and the delivery was just hours, the driver reportedly hung up on her.

"I made him aware that I knew he was only four hours away from us," she noted. "He called back several minutes later trying to bargain with me to see if he could deliver it on Sunday or Monday."

McNulty contacted her move coordinator, but quickly found that the company didn't know where the driver was. Her AirTag had given her "more information than they did."

Eventually, the driver called back and claimed he was with his girlfriend. He told McNulty that he didn't know that she could track her while he was going to "see my lady." He told her that he could make it the next day if he hustled, and she suggested that he did.

McNulty shared her experience in a Facebook post, stating that she hopes more military families use AirTags during major moves or reassignments.

"Instead of waiting for someone to change something I took matters into my own hands," she wrote. "I hope the word spreads, I hope other military families hear our story and they, too, add AirTags to their [household goods]."

This isn't the first time that AirTags have been used to find missing belongings. They've been used to find stolen scooters and lost wallets. A single AirTag retails for $29, while a 4-pack costs $99. Exclusive savings are available on both quantities in our AirTag Price Guide.

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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 29
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 9,989member
    You can’t trust anyone these days. The work ethic is dead and buried in this entitled culture. So this piece-of-shit driver lied through his teeth to his customer and she caught him red-handed. Still he wanted to ‘negotiate’ the delivery. I hope he didn’t rob her blind in the process.

    How many people calling in sick during the pandemic were frauds who just didn’t want to work?
    mwhiteBeatsravnorodomdewmeDnykjpRfC6fnBsOctoMonkeycat52
  • Reply 2 of 29
    applguyapplguy Posts: 218member
    I wonder if the truck driver had an iPhone or Android with the Tracker Detect app they would have been notified “AirTag Found Moving With You”. 
    lkrupp
  • Reply 3 of 29
    applguy said:
    I wonder if the truck driver had an iPhone or Android with the Tracker Detect app they would have been notified “AirTag Found Moving With You”. 
    The tag in the back of the truck is likely too far away to trigger the warning.
    twokatmew
  • Reply 4 of 29
    I used a mover once and after that experience decided I never would again.
    williamlondon
  • Reply 5 of 29
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 11,421member
    lkrupp said:
    You can’t trust anyone these days. The work ethic is dead and buried in this entitled culture. So this piece-of-shit driver lied through his teeth to his customer and she caught him red-handed. Still he wanted to ‘negotiate’ the delivery. I hope he didn’t rob her blind in the process.

    How many people calling in sick during the pandemic were frauds who just didn’t want to work?

    You won't get any disagreement from me on that.
    But, as a long haul driver, it is possible he had not been home, with his girl friend, for months.  And, with the driver shortage, they would likely send him back across the country as soon as he delivered that load.

    No, that doesn't excuse it.  But I suspect that there is another side to the story.
    We should perhaps be blaming the booking & scheduling agency as much or more than the driver.

    But here, we're only getting one side of the story.  We don't know if he was a goof-off or just trying to survive.  Sometimes that can be a fine line.

    In any case, somebody screwed up and: That's a great story about AirTags!

    edited January 19 larryjwJWSCscstrrfravnorodomfred1twokatmew
  • Reply 6 of 29
    jasonfjjasonfj Posts: 555member
    I was a victim of a scam moving company a few years ago. They loaded up my entire apartment of belongings and set off into the sunset. 

    After six months I tracked the crates
    down to a storage unit in New Jersey, but anything worth taking had gone.  And I’d paid them $5000 for the privilege. 

    I wish they’d invented AirTags back then. 
    scstrrfravnorodomGeorgeBMaccat52twokatmew
  • Reply 7 of 29
    lkrupp said:
    How many people calling in sick during the pandemic were frauds who just didn’t want to work?
    I actually do that every now and then, I am "sick of work". I have sick days that don't carry over and those extra days help me recharge  :D

    But yeah, I agree that the driver was dishonest, not a good trait, it's a pattern with most delivery services. I once used a delivery service to ship my motorcycle from coast to coast and plopped two airtags, one in the seat, the other in the luggage. I could see it even when they moved it from around in their holding warehouse. I was even able to see on long empty highways, the airtags will just pickup when a car drives by and they have an iPhone. It finally sat for a week in Oregon, so I called them (world's worst service) and told them it was just sitting there for an entire week. They asked how did I know, I didn't want to say AirTags, so I said my bike is equipped with a tracker. Got it the next morning.
    ravnorodomDnykjpRfC6fnBswebweaseltwokatmew
  • Reply 8 of 29
    applguy said:
    I wonder if the truck driver had an iPhone or Android with the Tracker Detect app they would have been notified “AirTag Found Moving With You”. 
    The tag in the back of the truck is likely too far away to trigger the warning.
    The tag needs to connect to an iOS device to be able to transmit its location (Find My Network). AirTags only have bluetooth and no wifi/cellular capabilities. The only plausible situation is the driver had Android (and therefore wouldn't get any notification unless he manually downloaded the app, unlikely) and the AirTag just connected to random devices as they passed by the truck, but never staying connected long enough to trigger the "moving with you" notification.
    scstrrftwokatmew
  • Reply 9 of 29
    sflocalsflocal Posts: 5,948member
    A tenant in my building was moving out, and one of the security cameras in the common stairwell has been tampered with and turned so that it pointed directly at a wall.  One of the movers had purposely swiveled the camera away from an area that in my opinion, might have been used to open the tenants' boxes to possibly steal something during the trip down to the truck.

    I immediately contacted the moving company,  informed him their employee will be arrested if he enters the building,  provided photos of the idiot's face as he swiveled the cameras, and he was fired that day.  I'm banking the thief didn't plan on me monitoring the cameras during the move.  

    It's downright sketchy the folks that are hired for these jobs.
    scstrrfravnorodomJWSCDnykjpRfC6fnBscat52
  • Reply 10 of 29
    maestro64maestro64 Posts: 5,035member
    First this is nothing new this kind of scams with moving has been going for a very long time. 

    The first problem the military does not give people a whole lot of money to move so they look for the lowest cost company to move their stuff. Right there you know you are going to have problems. Most of these no name moving companies are shady at best. I have moved many times in my career and twice across the entire country and never had a single issue and had no damage. But I used United Van Lines every single time. They were not cheap but most times it was covered in a relocation package I negotiated, even if it wasn't I found ways to cut the costs such as packing most of our stuff and just have them load the truck.

    I had person who work for me and we relocated them and gave nice relocation package. The person decided to go the cheap route and pocket some of the relocation money since we pay it in a lump sum. Well it ended up costing more than what was given to them. The moving company showed up right on time picking everything up, and it was on the delivery end where they pull all the scams. The move company first say the truck broke down, then had to move everything off that truck onto another truck at their warehouse, then could not find a crew to deliver it and it could be weeks before they could arrange delivery and the excuses stacked up. They final got the person to pay more to have the truck come to new house. When the truck showed up they refused to unload it unless the person paid more. The person who worked for me even had the police there when moving company arrived since they were afraid something like this would happen. Turns out the police said there was nothing they could do since no laws were broken all they could do was once the moving company was paid Cash they made sure the truck was unloaded. 

    I will tell you either move yourself or hire one of the major moving companies, anything in the middle is going to be problems. It could be as simple as broken furniture or a loss items, to the major horror stories of all your stuff being stolen or held for ransom.

    The other part of the problem is the Military does not help their own people. I think if a Military Brass called up this company and had few choose words with them they would be more than happy to make sure Military personal stuff showed up where it is needed and when it was needed.
    edited January 19 scstrrfravnorodomGeorgeBMacDogpersoncat52
  • Reply 11 of 29
    ronnronn Posts: 504member
    maestro64 said:

    The other part of the problem is the Military does not help their own people. I think is a Military Brass called up this company and had few choose word with them you would be more than happen to make sure Military personal stuff showed up where it need and when it was needed.
    That is the gist of the problem. Relying on the lowest costs only leads to heartache. The one major move we made was with a well-known mover that wasn't cheap. But it was cheaper than some of the horrors stories we heard from others. A niece basically lost all of her stuff on move from Los Angeles back to NYC. She had the police called but they would only watch while her stuff was unloaded. She decided to not pay the extra costs in cash as she knew most of her stuff was damaged or missing. Wound up taking the company to court, but ultimately lost more than she recovered in a judgement.

    Don't do cheap and buy insurance if possible.
    DnykjpRfC6fnBstwokatmew
  • Reply 12 of 29
    badmonkbadmonk Posts: 1,073member
    The problem with the anti-stalking paranoia is that it will get in the way of tracking your belongings when handed off to others like in this noteworthy example, everything has a downside.
    GeorgeBMac
  • Reply 13 of 29
    dewmedewme Posts: 4,185member
    The behavior of this driver was abhorrent by any standard. The fact that it was perpetrated against a military member and his family makes it only worse. 

    Missing his lady? Try telling a sailor who’s been deployed on a ship or submarine for 8 months or a soldier deployed halfway around the world for a year about missing time with their partners and kids. It’s part of the job, and for military members it’s part of a job they can’t quit prior to fulfilling their contract. 

    The military relocation organization responsible for this PCS move should ensure that this individual is never again allowed to be employed in any contract associated with US military relocation.

    As far as Apple is concerned, Apple should consider  making AirTag available for free to military service members involved in a change of duty station move involving private moving contractors. Put it all out in the open that the movers will be monitored, and removing a tag will result in the termination of their contract. Many trucking companies have been tracking their drivers using satellite links for decades. 
    cat52
  • Reply 14 of 29
    applguy said:
    I wonder if the truck driver had an iPhone or Android with the Tracker Detect app they would have been notified “AirTag Found Moving With You”. 
    The tag in the back of the truck is likely too far away to trigger the warning.

    if it was in a semi truck I would say yes but most of that gets broke down and loaded into box trucks since they can maneuver into residential areas easier than a semi so in that case the AirTag should be picked up since it may only be 25-30 feet away. Not bickering. On a side note great for her for doing that. The military families get so screwed over by movers it is sickening. 
    Just as sickening is the fact this is done to residential movers as well. 

    cat52
  • Reply 15 of 29
    lkrupp said:
    You can’t trust anyone these days. The work ethic is dead and buried in this entitled culture. So this piece-of-shit driver lied through his teeth to his customer and she caught him red-handed. Still he wanted to ‘negotiate’ the delivery. I hope he didn’t rob her blind in the process.

    How many people calling in sick during the pandemic were frauds who just didn’t want to work?

    You won't get any disagreement from me on that.
    But, as a long haul driver, it is possible he had not been home, with his girl friend, for months.  And, with the driver shortage, they would likely send him back across the country as soon as he delivered that load.

    No, that doesn't excuse it.  But I suspect that there is another side to the story.
    We should perhaps be blaming the booking & scheduling agency as much or more than the driver.

    But here, we're only getting one side of the story.  We don't know if he was a goof-off or just trying to survive.  Sometimes that can be a fine line.

    In any case, somebody screwed up and: That's a great story about AirTags!

    Stay safe out there driver! It sure can be a challenging job at times. 

  • Reply 16 of 29
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 11,421member
    lkrupp said:
    You can’t trust anyone these days. The work ethic is dead and buried in this entitled culture. So this piece-of-shit driver lied through his teeth to his customer and she caught him red-handed. Still he wanted to ‘negotiate’ the delivery. I hope he didn’t rob her blind in the process.

    How many people calling in sick during the pandemic were frauds who just didn’t want to work?

    You won't get any disagreement from me on that.
    But, as a long haul driver, it is possible he had not been home, with his girl friend, for months.  And, with the driver shortage, they would likely send him back across the country as soon as he delivered that load.

    No, that doesn't excuse it.  But I suspect that there is another side to the story.
    We should perhaps be blaming the booking & scheduling agency as much or more than the driver.

    But here, we're only getting one side of the story.  We don't know if he was a goof-off or just trying to survive.  Sometimes that can be a fine line.

    In any case, somebody screwed up and: That's a great story about AirTags!

    Stay safe out there driver! It sure can be a challenging job at times. 


    Long haul truck driving has never been known as an easy job.  It used to be only for the toughest of the tough (back before power steering, automatic transmissions and electric loaders).

    But today, without the teamsters union, drivers can be worked to the bone for little pay*.  And, instead of professional drivers we get trade school graduates barely able to back up the truck.
    It's also one of the causes of today's inflation:  they can't get enough people to move the goods -- so shortages happen and prices go up.


    * But, that's relative:  as Lkrupp correctly pointed out, the work ethic has declined.  (Along with loyalty to one's company and to their trade.)
    edited January 20
  • Reply 17 of 29
    lkrupp said:
    You can’t trust anyone these days. The work ethic is dead and buried in this entitled culture. So this piece-of-shit driver lied through his teeth to his customer and she caught him red-handed. Still he wanted to ‘negotiate’ the delivery. I hope he didn’t rob her blind in the process.

    How many people calling in sick during the pandemic were frauds who just didn’t want to work?

    You won't get any disagreement from me on that.
    But, as a long haul driver, it is possible he had not been home, with his girl friend, for months.  And, with the driver shortage, they would likely send him back across the country as soon as he delivered that load.

    No, that doesn't excuse it.  But I suspect that there is another side to the story.
    We should perhaps be blaming the booking & scheduling agency as much or more than the driver.

    But here, we're only getting one side of the story.  We don't know if he was a goof-off or just trying to survive.  Sometimes that can be a fine line.

    In any case, somebody screwed up and: That's a great story about AirTags!

    Stay safe out there driver! It sure can be a challenging job at times. 


    Long haul truck driving has never been known as an easy job.  It used to be only for the toughest of the tough (back before power steering, automatic transmissions and electric loaders).

    But today, without the teamsters union, drivers can be worked to the bone for little pay*.  And, instead of professional drivers we get trade school graduates barely able to back up the truck.
    It's also one of the causes of today's inflation:  they can't get enough people to move the goods -- so shortages happen and prices go up.


    * But, that's relative:  as Lkrupp correctly pointed out, the work ethic has declined.  (Along with loyalty to one's company and to their trade.)
    The worker shortage isn’t limited to trucking. The entire supply chain has been impacted by worker shortage. Office workers are resigning in large numbers, as well as restaurants, retail, and pretty much every industry. Yay capitalism!
    ronn
  • Reply 18 of 29
    lkrupp said:
    You can’t trust anyone these days. The work ethic is dead and buried in this entitled culture. So this piece-of-shit driver lied through his teeth to his customer and she caught him red-handed. Still he wanted to ‘negotiate’ the delivery. I hope he didn’t rob her blind in the process.

    How many people calling in sick during the pandemic were frauds who just didn’t want to work?

    You won't get any disagreement from me on that.
    But, as a long haul driver, it is possible he had not been home, with his girl friend, for months.  And, with the driver shortage, they would likely send him back across the country as soon as he delivered that load.

    No, that doesn't excuse it.  But I suspect that there is another side to the story.
    We should perhaps be blaming the booking & scheduling agency as much or more than the driver.

    But here, we're only getting one side of the story.  We don't know if he was a goof-off or just trying to survive.  Sometimes that can be a fine line.

    In any case, somebody screwed up and: That's a great story about AirTags!

    Stay safe out there driver! It sure can be a challenging job at times. 


    Long haul truck driving has never been known as an easy job.  It used to be only for the toughest of the tough (back before power steering, automatic transmissions and electric loaders).

    But today, without the teamsters union, drivers can be worked to the bone for little pay*.  And, instead of professional drivers we get trade school graduates barely able to back up the truck.
    It's also one of the causes of today's inflation:  they can't get enough people to move the goods -- so shortages happen and prices go up.


    * But, that's relative:  as Lkrupp correctly pointed out, the work ethic has declined.  (Along with loyalty to one's company and to their trade.)
    The worker shortage isn’t limited to trucking. The entire supply chain has been impacted by worker shortage. Office workers are resigning in large numbers, as well as restaurants, retail, and pretty much every industry. Yay capitalism!
    What you are seeing is not the result of capitalism, but the result of government constantly interfering in the free market system.
    cat52lkrupp
  • Reply 19 of 29
    ronnronn Posts: 504member
    lkrupp said:
    You can’t trust anyone these days. The work ethic is dead and buried in this entitled culture. So this piece-of-shit driver lied through his teeth to his customer and she caught him red-handed. Still he wanted to ‘negotiate’ the delivery. I hope he didn’t rob her blind in the process.

    How many people calling in sick during the pandemic were frauds who just didn’t want to work?

    You won't get any disagreement from me on that.
    But, as a long haul driver, it is possible he had not been home, with his girl friend, for months.  And, with the driver shortage, they would likely send him back across the country as soon as he delivered that load.

    No, that doesn't excuse it.  But I suspect that there is another side to the story.
    We should perhaps be blaming the booking & scheduling agency as much or more than the driver.

    But here, we're only getting one side of the story.  We don't know if he was a goof-off or just trying to survive.  Sometimes that can be a fine line.

    In any case, somebody screwed up and: That's a great story about AirTags!

    Stay safe out there driver! It sure can be a challenging job at times. 


    Long haul truck driving has never been known as an easy job.  It used to be only for the toughest of the tough (back before power steering, automatic transmissions and electric loaders).

    But today, without the teamsters union, drivers can be worked to the bone for little pay*.  And, instead of professional drivers we get trade school graduates barely able to back up the truck.
    It's also one of the causes of today's inflation:  they can't get enough people to move the goods -- so shortages happen and prices go up.


    * But, that's relative:  as Lkrupp correctly pointed out, the work ethic has declined.  (Along with loyalty to one's company and to their trade.)
    The worker shortage isn’t limited to trucking. The entire supply chain has been impacted by worker shortage. Office workers are resigning in large numbers, as well as restaurants, retail, and pretty much every industry. Yay capitalism!
    What you are seeing is not the result of capitalism, but the result of government constantly interfering in the free market system.
     :D :D :D :D :D  
    twokatmew
  • Reply 20 of 29
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 11,421member
    lkrupp said:
    You can’t trust anyone these days. The work ethic is dead and buried in this entitled culture. So this piece-of-shit driver lied through his teeth to his customer and she caught him red-handed. Still he wanted to ‘negotiate’ the delivery. I hope he didn’t rob her blind in the process.

    How many people calling in sick during the pandemic were frauds who just didn’t want to work?

    You won't get any disagreement from me on that.
    But, as a long haul driver, it is possible he had not been home, with his girl friend, for months.  And, with the driver shortage, they would likely send him back across the country as soon as he delivered that load.

    No, that doesn't excuse it.  But I suspect that there is another side to the story.
    We should perhaps be blaming the booking & scheduling agency as much or more than the driver.

    But here, we're only getting one side of the story.  We don't know if he was a goof-off or just trying to survive.  Sometimes that can be a fine line.

    In any case, somebody screwed up and: That's a great story about AirTags!

    Stay safe out there driver! It sure can be a challenging job at times. 


    Long haul truck driving has never been known as an easy job.  It used to be only for the toughest of the tough (back before power steering, automatic transmissions and electric loaders).

    But today, without the teamsters union, drivers can be worked to the bone for little pay*.  And, instead of professional drivers we get trade school graduates barely able to back up the truck.
    It's also one of the causes of today's inflation:  they can't get enough people to move the goods -- so shortages happen and prices go up.


    * But, that's relative:  as Lkrupp correctly pointed out, the work ethic has declined.  (Along with loyalty to one's company and to their trade.)
    The worker shortage isn’t limited to trucking. The entire supply chain has been impacted by worker shortage. Office workers are resigning in large numbers, as well as restaurants, retail, and pretty much every industry. Yay capitalism!

    Actually, this situation -- balancing supply & demand -- is where capitalism typically shines and leap frogs over socialism and communism.  And it will.  But, so far, the two are still out of balance.
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