Lawmakers push bill for smartphone kill switch


TOWN OF TONAWANDA, N.Y. (WIVB) – Elected leaders and police announced support for a federal law requiring a so-called “kill switch” on smartphones.

Rep. Brian Higgins, D-Buffalo, signed on to co-sponsor the Secure Our Smartphones bill in the House of Representatives.

Phone makers would have to include a “kill switch” that would be used if the phone was stolen.

State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman says that would prevent a costly crime that’s happening more often.

“There is a huge market, thieves know that they can get the money, and the only way to make this crime wave stop is for them to understand that this phone can be cancelled like I can cancel a credit card and there’s no point in stealing it,” Schneiderman said.

Schneiderman says a stolen smartphone can fetch up to $2,000 in foreign markets including Hong Kong. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review. Note: Comments containing links are not allowed.

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