New push for smartphone makers to add kill switches to thwart thieves

The kill switch would deactivate the phone if it was stolen.

The kill switch would deactivate the phone if it was stolen. (3/4/14)

MANHATTAN - Lawmakers are proposing adding "kill switches" to smartphones to help curb the rising number of smartphone thefts in New York City.

New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman says a kill switch would allow a user to deactivate their phone and remove all its data remotely if it's stolen, similar to how credit cards are canceled when stolen.

Joining Schneiderman at the press conference was NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton, who endorses the idea and says he'll be deploying more officers to help cut down on smartphone thefts.

Rep. Jose Serrano (D-The Bronx) has already introduced a similar bill in the U.S. House. Serrano says not only are people injured and killed in smartphone robberies, but says the thefts cost consumers around $30 billion annually.

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