A bill that would mandate that smartphones sold in California be equipped with a "kill switch" that would render them useless if stolen was given final legislative approval by the state Senate on Monday.
The measure, which next goes to Gov. Jerry Brown for consideration, would require mobile phones made after July 1, 2015, to include a feature allowing owners to remotely render them inoperable, if lost or stolen, as a deterrent to theft.
Law enforcement officials including
“Our goal is to swiftly take the wind out of the sails of thieves who have made the theft of smartphones one of the most prevalent street crimes in California’s biggest cities,” said Sen.
Smartphone makers initially had concerns with the measure, but most dropped their opposition after tablet computers were exempted and the effective date was delayed.
SB 962 is still opposed by the CTIA, a wireless industry group that said legislation is unnecessary because manufacturers have volunteered to pursue anti-theft measures.
The state Senate vote was 27-8 with some Republicans opposed.