Smartphone Thieves Beware Of "Kill Switch"
Black Enterprise Magazine September/October 2018 Issue


Have you been the victim of cell phone theft recently?

If yes, that’s no surprise to law enforcement agencies around the country. One in three robberies nationwide involves the theft of a mobile phone, according to a report by the Federal Communications Commission.

And that’s precisely why officials are asking smartphone makers in California’s Silicon Valley to develop a “kill switch” for phones that have been reported stolen, reports The Associated Press.

“Doing so would make the device completely useless to the thief,” says San Francisco District Attorney George Gascon.

“We know that the technology can be developed to prevent this,” Gascon told the AP. “This is more about social responsibility than economic gain.”

But perhaps it should be about “economic gain.” Nearly 175 million smartphones have been sold in the U.S., at a cost of about $69 billion. That’s not pocket change.

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Aaron Morrison

Aaron Morrison is an award-winning New York area-based multimedia journalist with a B.A. in Journalism from San Francisco State University. Aaron uses video, audio, photography, the web and social networks to tell captivating stories across all media platforms. Over the last year, Aaron has worked as a general assignment reporter for the Daily Record (Gannett) in northern New Jersey. Before that, he spent the spring of 2010 as the temporary legislative relief reporter for The Associated Press' statehouse bureau in Trenton, N.J. In his down time, Aaron enjoys the company of his friends and extended family. He is a fan of culinary arts and dreams of having a home kitchen so tricked out that Julia Child turns over in her grave.