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California First State To Pass Cellphone ‘Kill Switch’ Law

Evening Edition

Aired 8/27/14 on KPBS Midday Edition.

California First State To Pass Cell Phone 'Kill Switch' Law


George Garson, San Francisco District Attorney

Lt. Kevin Mayer, San Diego Police Department


Gov. Jerry Brown signed into law a bill making California the first state to require smartphones to offer a “kill switch.” San Francisco Democrat Sen. Mark Leno says the anti-theft technology would allow smartphone owners to render their devices useless if stolen.

Police leaders and San Francisco District Attorney George Garson pushed for the legislation saying it would be a deterrent to theft.

Don't Be A Theft Victim!

Tips For Protecting Your Electronic Device

Carry your device in a pocket or where it's not easily seen or in reach of others

Be smart about when and where you use your electronic device

Change the color of your earpiece so it's not identifying you are carrying an expensive electronic device.

Avoid sitting or standing near the doors of buses, trains or areas where someone might run off with your device

Source: Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority

According to Consumer Reports the number of victims of smartphone theft in the U.S. has gone from 1.6 million to 3.1 million between 2012–2013. In San Francisco, mobile communication theft accounts for 67 percent of all robberies. In Oakland that number is 75 percent. San Diego has also seen an increase in robberies involving smartphones.

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