The government has met with leading phone manufacturers including Apple, Samsung, Google, BlackBerry and Nokia to discuss how to clamp down on the growing issue of phone theft.
The Home Office said that crime prevention minister Norman Baker met with leaders to outline a number of potential ideas to help make the the public safer and the task of using stolen phones harder.
One of the ideas being considered is an online advice service to help provide information to those affected by phone theft and offer tips on how to better protect phones. Baker said such a step is vital to help tackle the scourge of high-end phone theft, which is rising all the time.
“Recorded crime is down by more than 10 percent under this government, but we are seeing signs of an increase in theft from the person, mainly smartphones,” he said.
“Mobile phone technology is changing all the time and we need innovative solutions to ensure we get ahead of criminals. I want to make mobile phone theft as difficult as possible and this meeting with telecom leaders is an important step forward.”
A spokesperson for Samsung said the firm was pleased to be backing the initiative: “Samsung is pleased to be supporting the UK government in its goal to reduce the serious issue of mobile phone crime theft.”
Nokia also voiced its support for the plans. “Nokia has a long history of working with governments, operators and retailers to reduce the theft of mobile phones, it is good to see this renewed focus on protecting users,” the firm said.
The talks represent another stage in government attempts to tackle the problems caused by phone theft. Mayor Boris Johnson has called for help from manufacturers such as Apple and Google to make it harder for their devices to be used by thieves, following a rise in phone theft in London.
He has also entered London into a global alliance with New York and San Francisco – which also have high phone theft rates – to try and form a co-ordinated approach to the issue.
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