Cyber flashing, or why you should always disable AirDrop when not using it

By Shawn Knight
Aug 13, 2015
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  1. The concept of flashing someone – you know, exposing your naughty bits – has been around since classical times yet even this ancient form of exhibitionism isn’t immune to technological modernization.

    The British Transport Police are investigating what’s being called the first-ever reported case of cyber flashing. As the story goes, 34-year-old iPhone user Lorraine Crighton-Smith received a pair of sexually explicit images during a recent train ride in South London.

    Crighton-Smith told the BBC that she had the AirDrop feature enabled since she had previously been using it to share photos with another iPhone user. That’s when she received the first offending photo showing a man’s exposed genitalia.

    The view from the preview was enough for her to decline the incoming message; soon after, another picture followed which is when she realized it must be somebody on the train nearby sending them. Despite reporting the incident to authorities as soon as possible, there was little they could do because she didn’t accept the incoming messages.

    AirDrop works over Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, creating a short-range connection to other iDevices for the purpose of sharing documents or media. The feature defaults to “contacts only” meaning only those in your contact list can see you. The option exists to open the feature up to everyone which can be used to connect to someone not in your contact list. That appears to be what happened here; Crighton-Smith made her device discoverable to everyone at an earlier time and forgot to revert back to contacts only.

    Image courtesy iMore

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  2. Burty117

    Burty117 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,890   +645

    When I first read this on BBC I thought to myself "why is this even news? I bet this has happened way before this women ever reported it".

    Then I started digging deeper, why did she have AirDrop set to "Everyone" and not "Contacts Only"?
    Is she having a secret affair and the easiest way out was to provide police with some random dic pics?
    Maybe she's a secret lesbian and wants this sort of male attention to see if she could swing both ways?

    All I know is, this shouldn't really be news, all that happened was she left her AirDrop on public and as I would have expected, she got a D*ck Pic, that is funny, not news worthy. I'm guessing she's probably no fun on a night out and probably hates most comedians.
    stewi0001 and Arris like this.
  3. davislane1

    davislane1 TS Evangelist Posts: 3,379   +2,167


    It's news because it upset a woman. Had it been a guy, the story would be about how he didn't have his AirDrop settings in order, followed by ridicule in the comments about him responding negatively to a girl's sexual antics.
    BlueDrake likes this.
  4. yukka

    yukka TechSpot Paladin Posts: 824   +53

    I think the story would still have been printed if a man had his airdrop set to "everyone" and received an unwanted pic of a **** and balls.
  5. davislane1

    davislane1 TS Evangelist Posts: 3,379   +2,167

    In other words... how he didn't have his settings in order, followed by ridicule in the comments about being a technological rube.

    The point being, when it's a woman that's offended, it's a significant news piece. When the same thing happens to a man, it's linked somewhere to the right of the important stuff.
  6. fredderf81

    fredderf81 TS Enthusiast Posts: 51   +40

    Best solution: don't buy an apple device .... any other device will do; windows, android, blackberry, whatever ... problem solved .... flame on!
  7. alabama man

    alabama man TS Maniac Posts: 202   +100

    My android has started pairing with all wifi it finds after last update (version 4. sumthing, old phone). When I bought it if I turned wifi off it never turned it on automatically. There is no setting to disable wifi completely as I don't even need it. Hate google for making my security suck.
  8. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 9,156   +598

    @Burty117 what a heartless, sexist comment, wow! I would rant for hours, but refuse to engage in ad hominem, even with you and grateful there's a large body of water between us.
    wiyosaya likes this.
  9. wiyosaya

    wiyosaya TS Maniac Posts: 939   +244

    My thoughts exactly. With forum members like that, who needs trolls?
  10. Burty117

    Burty117 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,890   +645

    What the hell are you on about? This shouldn't be news whether it was male, female, alien, animal, bacteria or an Atom that got a D*ck Pic flashed at them, they left AirDrop on, it's going to happen...

    The other part of my comment was extreme because that's pretty much the only interesting thing in the entire article, And I had to make it up...It wasn't sexist, heartless maybe, or you simply cannot take a joke, which is more likely...
    Arris likes this.
  11. davislane1

    davislane1 TS Evangelist Posts: 3,379   +2,167

    Poe's law is in effect.
    Burty117 likes this.
  12. Burty117

    Burty117 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,890   +645

    Ah, I should have added the winky...

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