A measure requiring smartphone manufactures to include a "kill-switch" was signed into law by California Governor Jerry Brown. The kill-switch would "render a smartphone useless after it was stolen" in an attempt tp deter telephone theft.
In San Francisco, 2,400 cellphones were stolen last year, up 23 percent from 2012, according to the San Francisco police. Phone thefts also grew in New York and Washington last year. Overall, about 3.1 million devices were stolen in the United States in 2013, nearly double the 1.6 million that were stolen in 2012, according to Consumer Reports.
However, some data suggests that kill-switch technology is already helping deter smartphone theft. Apple’s iPhone has offered kill switch technology since September. In June, law enforcement statistics for several major cities saw a significant dip in thefts of Apple devices after Apple’s introduction of the antitheft feature. For example, comparing data in the six months before and after Apple released its anti-theft feature, police said iPhone robberies in San Francisco dropped 38 percent.
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