Kat Pitman was texting her husband and settling into her aisle seat of her morning flight when her iPhone buzzed with an AirDrop request.

Someone called "Dildo Baggins" was sending her a pornographic image.

The US woman had accidentally left her AirDrop "on" after exchanging business cards with a client.

She was on a Southwest Airlines flight from Louisville to Chicago on Friday morning at 9:05 AM, when the disturbing ordeal began.


Pitman told USA Today she first received an AirDrop of a "just very explicit" pornographic image.

She immediately turned off the feature, but then had a change of heart and turned it back on to grab a screenshot of the sender's "name".

When she turned AirDrop back on, she was sent more AirDrops with a video and a second graphic photo.

The flight was still boarding so Pitman decided to show her phone to two of the Southwest flight attendants on her flight.

She was worried the sender might be in her row for the hour-long flight.

The attendants weren't surprised by what was happening and immediately used the intercom system to tell "Mr. Baggins" to stop what he was doing.

A huge thank you to Southwest Airlines!!! This morning I got on my flight and was bombarded by inappropriate photos and...

Posted by Kat Pitman on Friday, 14 June 2019

It is not an isolated incident. Cyberflashing, as it is known, pops up with alarming regularity in the headlines and anecdotally.

Southwest spokesman Chriz Mainz confirmed a passenger sent lewd photos and videos via AirDrop on Southwest Flight 1388.


"The safety and comfort of all of our customers is our highest concern, and we don't condone such inappropriate behavior,'' he said in a statement to USA TODAY. "Our crews are equipped to respond quickly and appropriately to address these concerns expressed by our customers, which is exactly what they did in this case.''

How to prevent this

If a technology executive like Pitman can forget to change their AirDrop settings, it can happen to anyone.

When Pitman got on the plane, her AirDrop was set to receive files from "everyone" instead of limiting the senders to "contacts only."

Another option is to turn "receiving off."