stolen stuff from car

Is Apple doing enough to prevent an upsurge in thefts targeting the iPhone? That’s the question New York State’s Attorney General is asking the smartphone maker, citing several violent incidents involving thefts of mobile phones. In a letter to Apple, Android-maker Google, Galaxy manufacturer Samsung and others, Eric Schneiderman wants details on what the companies are doing to prevent thefts of handsets.

The state’s top law enforcement official noted thefts of Apple products in New York City between January 1 and September 23 rose forty percent while major crimes in the Big Apple increased by just four percent…

According to Bloomberg, Schneiderman wrote in a May 10 letter to Apple’s Tim Cook:

I seek to understand why companies that can develop sophisticated handheld electronics, such as the products manufactured by Apple, cannot also create technology to render stolen devices inoperable and thereby eliminate the expanding black market on which they are sold.

Apple, of course, has a technology that an “render stolen device inoperable” and they are calling it Find My iPhone, but Schneiderman doesn’t seem to have gotten the memo.

His letter also cites a 26-year-old Museum of Modern Art chef murdered in 2012 for his iPhone and the February stabbing of three people after a fight broke out over an iPhone on a Queens subway platform.

The same question has been raised as law enforcement officials ponder whether Apple can do more to combat the thefts. NYC Police recently launched an undercover operation to reduce the number of stores selling stolen iPhones.

While iPhones are most popular with NYC thieves, the letter did not single out Apple. Google – which makes the Android software powering Samsung’s Galaxy smartphone – also came in for questioning by the New York official.

“Foreign trafficking of stolen devices has proliferated, and an abundance of domestic black market resellers, including right here in New York, means as a practical matter that phones do not, contrary to your website’s assertion, become unusable,” Schneiderman wrote to Google Chairman Eric Schmidt.

  • The thing about Find My iPhone is this. All a crook has to do is power the device off (probably the first thing they’ll do). Put the device in DFU mode. Restore in iTunes and boom Find My iPhone is gone so in my opinion Apple should be doing more to prevent thefts…

    • Well, for JB devices, there’s iCaughtU, and I tell you, it’s a whole lot better than simple FinMyPhone! For starters, you can prevent Shutting down from the LockScreen + email sent with location and picture. Wrongly entered passwords do the same. Bonus, you can send SMS to stalk your own phone and get the location by email.

      • You cant prevent shutdown, hold the power and home key, and no jailbreak tweak can stop you from shutting down

      • True, Home button + shut down turns it off, but a picture is taken in doing so and your location sent by email. Shutting down by pressing shut down is the one that does not work. Removing sim-card also triggers the same.

      • What will you do if the picture comes back as a “masked” individual? Do you think that criminals today are simple street thugs? They could be reading our comments as we post them.

        Be smart: don’t make yourself a target in the first place (ie wearing Beats cans & head bobbing to loud music while on public transit, etc)

    • well done…. you’ve just advertised to thieves/would be thieves how to get round the software

    • I couldn’t agree less. ‘Find my Iphone’ is completely useless. U can power off, erase and bam! A fresh new phone for thieves and muggers

  • jose castro

    LOL that’s gonna be hard considering every one has a mobile phone. Unless you want to put a self destruct feature in mobile devices, this is gonna take a long time to accomplish. Ive been taking classes to do IT and im almost done ;). My last class i had was computer and network security. They showed a video about privacy, that video is really good but really really scary, and not much people know about whats going on when in comes to mobile devices.

  • Falk M.

    “Apple, of course, has a technology that an “render stolen device inoperable” and they are calling it Find My iPhone, but Schneiderman doesn’t seem to have gotten the memo.”

    Oh you haven’t, because Find my iPhone is the last thing I’d trust.
    My first reaction would be to call my carrier and track the damn IMEI for me and report to police directly.

  • Find my phone Is not perfect but at least a way … But as already mentioned just restore the device and it can’t help you .. Imo find my phone should work with the IMEI .. Doesn’t matter if the theft lock in to the phone with another carrier sim or apple I’d .. As soon as he activates GPS Find my phone can find him …

    • I know some people will have mixed feelings about this but I don’t think it should be possible to disable Find My iPhone. I think it should just be on all the time and require the apple ID in order to disable it. Find My iPhone should also stay enabled even through restores and upgrades…

  • Vvbreaker

    it was a very awkward moment for me when I bought the very same iphone 5 that i had lost!

  • All crapple has to do is utilize the damn device registration system they already have, but no, they’re too greedy to do it as that will reduce the sales of iDevices.

    Thank God for iCaughtU Pro, ’cause no way hozay am I putting any trust in the “Find My iPhone” gimmick.

  • Ivan Braeddly

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