What Is The Wireless Industry Doing About Phone Theft?

Six months ago, CTIA – The Wireless Association took up an interesting challenge. And they didn’t take it on all by their lonesome.

In addition to partnering with various wireless companies, the FCC and countless law enforcement officials, the organization announced the four voluntary steps the wireless industry would take to help deter smartphone thefts – an effort intended chiefly to protect sensitive consumer data.

Included in the four steps was a database designed to prevent GSM smartphones that were reported as stolen from being activated or provided service in the U.S. by October 31, 2012.

On Thursday, CTIA-The Wireless Association President and CEO Steve Largent issued a statement regarding this effort and its progress.

“CTIA and its member companies have always been advocates for wireless users’ safety, which is why we’re pleased our members met the voluntary deadline to create databases that will prevent stolen smartphones from being reactivated,” he says. “While the GSM and CDMA databases are important, consumers also play a key role in protecting their information and preventing smartphone theft. By using passwords or PINs, as well as remote wiping capabilities, consumers can help to dry up the aftermarket for stolen devices. Today’s average wireless user stores a lot of personal information on a mobile device, such as pictures, video, banking and other sensitive data. It’s important consumers know that by taking simple precautions, such as downloading a few apps, they can protect their information from unauthorized users.”

The organization says that wireless customers who would like more information can obtain it by visiting the CTIA’s official website.