Have you tried using Waze lately to navigate and were surprised to find out that all the writing on the map is in Arabic? Does your location-based app think that you are in Egypt or Lebanon even though you live in Kfar Saba or Givatayim? This is not a bug or a cyberattack, but rather a GPS jamming by the Israel Defense Forces following the resumption of fighting in Gaza.
"During the fighting, GPS jamming is activated for various operational needs in order to protect the security of the residents of the State of Israel," the IDF spokesperson's Unit said in a statement on Sunday. "Citizens should be aware that jamming can cause various and temporary effects in location-based applications."
The effect of these disruptions on the users is not constant, and it changes according to the operational needs of the IDF.
"My whole family and I are in Cairo according to the GPS, but we are in Kfar Saba," one of the users who experienced the GPS disruptions told Ynet on Sunday.
The IDF began proactively disrupting GPS signals at the beginning of the war in order to mislead the enemy.
The disruptions affect not only navigational apps like Waze or Google Maps, but any location-based app. Therefore, it is recommended in the Home Front Command application to enter the settings and manually add the location under "areas of interest," so that you receive the notifications relevant to your area of residence.
Google, Waze's parent company, stated: "We are aware that GPS disruptions are currently being activated throughout Israel and are affecting all location-based applications at this stage. It should be noted that, due to the disruptions, there may be temporary inaccuracies in finding the location and navigation in the Waze application. As always, Waze monitors carefully to ensure that the map is as accurate and up-to-date as possible."