iPhone Kill Switch Leading To Decline In Theft, Microsoft And Google To Follow Suit

Apple introduced a kill switch to its iPhones last autumn, and it appears that the new security measure is actually curtailing theft. Eric Schneiderman, New York’s attorney general, and George Gascón, San Francisco’s DA, both believe that kill switch technology has led to fewer robberies involving iPhones.

“The introduction of kill switches has clearly had an effect on the conduct of smartphone thieves,” Schneiderman told the New York Times. “If these can be canceled like the equivalent of canceling a credit card, these are going to be the equivalent of stealing a paperweight.”

iphone 5s

Although both men have a bit of a bias towards the usefulness of kill switch technology, having worked together on the Secure Our Smartphones Initiative, the reported numbers would seem to back them up.

In New York, the Times reports that iPhone thefts have dropped 19% year over year, while they’ve dropped 38% in San Francisco and 24% in London.

Having a kill switch will be law in California for all phones manufactured after July 1st of next year. Major companies including Microsoft and Google have voluntarily agreed to build similar technology into mobile devices by the same date.