12:10 PM – For quite some time now, San Francisco Attorney General George Gascón and New York Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman have been trying to get manufacturers to add a kill switch to all smartphones. This would benefit customers because if their smartphones were stolen, a remote kill switch would render the device useless, and completely shut it off.
By doing this, the main general idea is to discourage thieves from stealing smartphones because if they did, there would be no benefit from it due to the device being shut off remotely with the kill switch.
Both Gascón and Schneiderman have asked several companies such as Apple and Samsung to come up with solutions to help prevent thefts. Apple responded by adding in “Activation Lock”, which is a very helpful tool for remotely locking your iPhone if it’s stolen.
— SF DISTRICT ATTORNEY (@SFDAOffice) November 19, 2013
Samsung responded by adding new software from LoJack called Absolute LoJack that will help to render stolen devices useless. The Korean giant has smartphone shipments ready to be sent to carriers, however, wireless carriers argue and reject this idea completely.
Why did wireless carriers reject this? Carriers say that kill switch technology such as this isn’t the answer to helping to reduce smartphone theft. The reason carriers think this software isn’t the answer is because they fear hackers may be able to access the software and disable the users phone.
It’s very obvious that carriers are not interested in protecting their customers, rather, want to obtain premiums, such as the extra insurance money they charge.
A recent study published in June claims that smartphone theft cost consumers more than $30 billion last year. This is a lot of money that is being lost, and it would be very helpful to consumers to have their wireless carriers do something about it. So far, they seem to not want to do anything other than count their profits.
Will you be showing your support?