US law enforcers want to see a kill switch on our mobile phones

A posting from Naked Security on mobile phones:

US law enforcers are demanding a kill switch on our smartphones that would theoretically brick them after they’re stolen.

New York’s top prosecutor, State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, together with San Francisco District Attorney George Gascón, put out a statement on Thursday about the launch of an initiative devoted to drying up the secondary market on which stolen devices are sold.

The initiative, dubbed Secure Our Smartphones (SOS), is a coalition of law enforcers from across the country: state attorneys general, district attorneys, major city police chiefs, state and city comptrollers, as well as public safety activists and consumer advocates.

The announcement came on the same day that Gascón and Schneiderman co-hosted a “Smartphone Summit” with representatives from smartphone makers Apple, Samsung, Google and Microsoft.

Schneiderman said in the statement that about 113 smartphones are stolen or lost every minute in the US, with many of the thefts turning violent.

Here’s how the SOS coalition describes this “epidemic”:

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