Changes in California smartphone laws

A new law, State Sen. Mark Leno’s Smartphone Theft Prevention Act (Senate Bill 962), was signed into California law on Monday indicating a change that will hopefully prevent the massive amounts of cell-phone theft that has been plaguing the state.


After July 1st, 2015, every smartphone sold in in California must by law be equipped with default theft deterrent technology that will render the phone useless to the thief if stolen, eradicating the incentive to steal smartphones almost completely (unless said thief knows a super great place to sell smartphone parts) as well as the violence that comes along with such robberies.


The law dictates that every smartphone sold in California (online or in store) no matter where it was manufactured, must come with a default kill switch that when activated, will remotely turn off the phone and erase it’s contents, being able to withstand a hard reset or operating system downgrade, henceforth making it useless. There must also be the ability to turn it back on by the owner of the phone if the phone was found to be misplaced instead of stolen.


Authorized users also will have the opportunity  to opt out and turn the kill switch feature off, which, just like the iCloud lock, you will have to remember to do if you are selling or giving your smartphone away!


So, good news? Well, we think it’s awesome news that people are trying and succeeding in changing technology laws in an effort to enhance public safety, certainly. But will this effort decrease the amount of robberies in California? We can only hope, and wait and see.






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