Apr 162014

According to a report from CNET, Many companies including Apple are trying to stop smartphone theft by entering into the Smartphone Anti-Theft Voluntary Commitment.

The CTIA trade group has proposed this anti-theft measure that will come preloaded or be available for download on new model smartphones. This tool will disable a stolen phone and will be made available by participating manufacturers and carriers.

findmyiphoneThe tools provided by smartphone manufactures will allow costumers with lost or stolen smartphones do the following:

  • Remote wipe the the user data that is stored on the phone
  • Disable the smartphone so it cannot be used without a password or PIN, except for 911 emergency use
  • Prevent reactivation or a factory reset without the original owner’s permission
  • Unlock the smartphone if is recovered by the original user and restore data if possible

This comes after several lawmakers attempt to pass the kill switch bill, which would allow for the remote disabling of a device. New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman and San Francisco District Attorney George Gascon basically trying to stop thieves from stealing smartphones by making them unusable. The CTIA opposes the kill switch saying that the measures wont curb theft and would put the phone at risk of being disabled by malicious hackers. The CTIA wants to offer users an anti-theft measure that isn’t permanent and give them the option to opt in.

This is what the two officials have to say about the move:

“While CTIA’s decision to respond to our call for action by announcing a new voluntary commitment to make theft-deterrent features available on smartphones is a welcome step forward, it falls short of what is needed to effectively end the epidemic of smartphone theft,” the statement said.”


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