United States Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) sent a letter to the nation’s five largest wireless carriers urging them to take action to curb the theft of mobile wireless phones. While praising the measures carriers have taken to date, Sen. Klobuchar wrote that additional steps – such as “kill switch” technology that would deter thieves from reselling stolen phones on the black market – are needed.
Sen. Klobuchar’s letter directed each carrier to provide the Judiciary Subcommittee on Antitrust, Competition Policy and Consumer Rights with detailed information on the following issues by January 9, 2014:
- Information explaining whether the carrier has had offers by handset manufacturers to install “kill switch” technology, and, if so, why the carrier has or has not adopted such technology.
- Information about whether the carrier has considered including this solution on handsets made by manufacturers now competing with Apple’s activation lock technology that operates as a “kill switch” on iPhones. If not, the carrier is asked to describe the reasoning behind its decision.
- How the carrier will include such technology options at no cost to consumers in the future and how its phone security offerings differ from those of its competitors.