Drop in smartphone thefts after introduction of kill switch

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- Cell phone robberies in San Francisco dropped 27 percent over a two-year period since the wireless industry installed kill switches on phone.

The decline was for logged between January 2013 and December 2014, according to crime data released Tuesday.

New York and London also saw sharp declines in cell phone thefts.

The news comes after smartphone robberies between 2012 and 2013 increased by 94 percent nationwide.

In June 2013, Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman, London Mayor Boris Johnson and San Francisco District Attorney George Gasc=n formed an initiative and called on the smartphone industry to adopt kill switch technology as a theft deterrent.

Apple introduced a kill switch in September 2013.

The technology allows a user to deactivate a stolen phone from a computer, making it unusable.