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  • New York Authorities Ask Smartphone Manufacturers to Help Stop Smartphone Thefts


    The Attorney General for the state of New York recently asked Apple and other tech leaders to do more to stop smartphone thieves and further aid in the elimination of a growing black market for the stolen devices. In a letter to Apple CEO Tim Cook, Eric Schneiderman called the company to task on not implementing tech to cut down on theft. The following was part of his letter:

    I seek to understand, why companies that can develop sophisticated handheld electronics, such as the products manufactured by Apple, cannot also create technology to render stolen devices inoperable and thereby eliminate the expanding black market on which they are sold.
    Schneiderman’s letters to Apple, Google, Microsoft, and Samsung came just a few days after a piece in The New York Times called out Apple and other manufacturers, saying that the telecoms companies essentially profited off smartphone theft. In the specific piece, San Francisco district attorney George Gascón said he met with Apple to discuss antitheft technology but Apple had given no indication that they were interested in implementing such technology.

    As of right now, a number of antitheft technologies are already built into many smartphones. Users can track stolen iOS devices with Apple’s iCloud-based “Find My iPhone” service, while AT&T offers a system that blocks stolen iPhones from accessing its network. According to critics though, these efforts don’t deter thieves who will typically hack a device to erase all of its data and basically make it brand new. Schneiderman addressed this issue in his latter to Google Chairman, Eric Schmidt:

    Foreign trafficking of stolen devices has proliferated and an abundance of domestic black market resellers, including right here in New York, means as a practical matter that phones do not, contrary to your website’s assertion, become unusable.
    It was reported that thefts of Apple devices alone caused a 14% jump in crime in New York City. It’s likely that NYC isn’t the only area affected by such a negative trend.

    Source: Bloomberg
    This article was originally published in forum thread: New York Authorities Ask Smartphone Manufacturers to Help Stop Smartphone Thefts started by Akshay Masand View original post
    Comments 15 Comments
    1. vinaygoel2000's Avatar
      vinaygoel2000 -
      Next iPhone will come with a lanyard like the current iPod touch.
    1. dsg's Avatar
      dsg -
      what does he want to do, get the companies to make them undesirable, oh wait if they did that they wouldn't sell

      sell the devices for less money, making resale value less which could relate to no point in stealing them

      make the device self destruct after a certain length of time after it's stolen, not going to happen

      it's not the companies problem, you do your job and find the offenders and let the companies do theirs by making desirable devices

      we have insurance we can take out, their is find my iPhone, Android and Windows phone probably have something similar and there are alternatives to these as well

      I think that should be enough and I personally believe there's already too much surveillance that invades privacy for my liking,

      Edit: ah the lanyard, these bring conflict, person has phone yanked out of hand just for the thief to be recoiled by the lanyard, if said thief is the scared type, they just run off not too much of issue. If the thief is the kind that is willing to do more to get the device your stuffed, not everybody is a black belt
    1. iM1sf1t's Avatar
      iM1sf1t -
      iCaughtU pro... It's how Apple should have made Find iPhone.
    1. vinaygoel2000's Avatar
      vinaygoel2000 -
      Quote Originally Posted by dsg View Post

      it's not the companies problem, you do your job and find the offenders and let the companies do theirs by making desirable devices

      we have insurance we can take out, their is find my iPhone, Android and Windows phone probably have something similar and there are alternatives to these as well

      Edit: ah the lanyard, these bring conflict, person has phone yanked out of hand just for the thief to be recoiled by the lanyard, if said thief is the scared type, they just run off not too much of issue. If the thief is the kind that is willing to do more to get the device your stuffed, not everybody is a black belt
      I agree and the lanyard was a joke.
    1. tridley68's Avatar
      tridley68 -
      Quote Originally Posted by vinaygoel2000 View Post
      Next iPhone will come with a lanyard like the current iPod touch.
      Why should Apple care this way they can get you to buy another phone why would they want to squash profits.
    1. luvmytj's Avatar
      luvmytj -
      Why are the authorities asking manufacturers to do their job? Apple lets you lock your iPhone, so they've done their duty.
    1. MCleveland89's Avatar
      MCleveland89 -
      I seek to understand, why authorities who are paid to do a job, can't do it without asking others to do it for them.
    1. BhadKarma's Avatar
      BhadKarma -
      Pull the SIM card. Turn off the phone. Restore.

      Find my iPhone does nothing. Jus sayin.

      :looksaroundmischievously:
    1. ramicio's Avatar
      ramicio -
      Quote Originally Posted by MCleveland89 View Post
      I seek to understand, why authorities who are paid to do a job, can't do it without asking others to do it for them.
      Maybe because people made it their job because they're lazy. Safety is not the responsibility of the police, it's the responsibility of the people. There is no safety in places like NYC because people aren't allowed to be armed.
    1. Villebilly's Avatar
      Villebilly -
      Any software that Apple puts on a device a work around will be discovered by thieves.
    1. dsg's Avatar
      dsg -
      Software will never stop a physical theft FULL STOP
    1. Lohand's Avatar
      Lohand -
      Forget all the technical bla, bla, bla for now. Apple could start by just stopping dirt-bags from boldly waltzing up to the "genius bar" and warranty exchanging stolen iPhones for "clean" ones. Sayin...
    1. quidam_brujah's Avatar
      quidam_brujah -
      Quote Originally Posted by MCleveland89 View Post
      I seek to understand, why authorities who are paid to do a job, can't do it without asking others to do it for them.
      If you want cops finding your stolen iphone, you are wanting to pay more taxes for more cops, yes?

      Quote Originally Posted by ramicio View Post
      Maybe because people made it their job because they're lazy. Safety is not the responsibility of the police, it's the responsibility of the people. There is no safety in places like NYC because people aren't allowed to be armed.
      Yeah. Guns in NYC will be a good way to prevent iphone theft...

      Grow up.
    1. supersaian's Avatar
      supersaian -
      A problem of this kind of security app is if the iphone goes to safe mode, the app will not able to do anything.
    1. dsg's Avatar
      dsg -
      The safe mode on the iDevices is a jailbreak thing, it's not there on a jailed iDevices and like I said above, software can't stop physical thefts