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Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
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After news that government officials would be testing the efficiency of iOS 7's Activation Lock against thieves, San Francisco District Attorney George Gascón has come out in support of the feature, saying that "clear improvements" have been made to stop criminals, according to the San Francisco Examiner.

ios7_activation_lock.jpg
Last week, Gascón and New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman brought in security experts from the Northern California Regional Intelligence Center to test out Apple's Activation Lock feature as well as Absolute Software's Lojack service on the Samsung Galaxy S4 in order to determine how effective they are against thieves.
"I'm very optimistic that they came and were willing to share their technology with us," Gascón said in a statement, also noting that Microsoft and Google had not yet come forth with their plans to combat theft. Gascón did not detail how the specific features work, explaining that they were not yet finished.
Both attorneys called for the tests as a part of the Secure Our Smartphone (S.O.S) program that aims to stop the theft and black market resale of stolen mobile devices. While carriers have already established a database to track stolen phones, it has proven to be largely futile. Prior to these tests, Gascón and Schneiderman called for smartphones to have a kill switch that would disable them in the event of theft.

Announced at WWDC, Activation Lock is set to be included in iOS 7, which is expected to be released to consumers this fall.

Article Link: San Francisco District Attorney Impressed by iOS 7's Activation Lock Feature
 

KPOM

macrumors P6
Oct 23, 2010
16,536
5,445
It's good to see companies taking phone theft seriously. It's becoming a major issue.
 

macus3r

macrumors regular
Aug 30, 2005
105
28
Yea as if Mr gubmint here isn't gettin a free iPhone 5S after making such positive comments.

Let's see how it really performs once it hits the streets and subways of NYC
 

NachoGrande

macrumors 6502a
Mar 30, 2010
971
1,708
Yeah the phone companies should be responsible for fixing this. That way we don't have to prosecute the criminals as usual. :rolleyes:
 

Bilbo63

macrumors 6502
Apr 27, 2010
299
34
Yea as if Mr gubmint here isn't gettin a free iPhone 5S after making such positive comments.

Let's see how it really performs once it hits the streets and subways of NYC

Seriously? Your accusation is based on what proof exactly?
 

Lord Hamsa

macrumors 6502a
Jul 16, 2013
672
553
I'm not a fan of big government, but this looks more like the way things should work. That is, DAs note that there is a rash of a particular kind of crime and put out a call to request that businesses making those products come up with their own ideas to address the problem.

Much better than the traditional government approach of mandating a particular solution that a) stifles innovative concepts that someone else might come with, and b) probably doesn't work.
 

j4m13

macrumors member
Jul 21, 2013
63
37
The main thing to watch out for on the iOS 7 lock that i think quite a few people will get caught out on initially is resale of the device.
I buy spares or repairs iPhones, iPads etc to repair them up, if i were to buy one that shows the Welcome to iPhone screen but doesnt have a Wifi Connection or a Sim inside you would never know it was stolen untill you try to activate it.

Now one thing i have noticed as a heads up to any buyers, if you Restore an Iphone from iOS7 to iOS6 the activation lock still comes on, if a phone was stolen on iOS7 and had been restored to iOS6 it will still NOT activate!

i certainly DO NOT buy stolen phones, but i like to educate myself and others on how not to be ripped of!

Jamie
 

Dwalls90

Contributor
Feb 5, 2009
5,246
3,530
I'm amazed at how Apple can do this.

It seems to override even DFU mode? So this must be very low level bootrom stuff here ...
 

anomie

Suspended
Jun 29, 2010
557
152
Yeah the phone companies should be responsible for fixing this. That way we don't have to prosecute the criminals as usual. :rolleyes:

What's wrong with you? You cannot prosecute thousands of stolen phones.
Go outside and learn something about the real life..
 

Tankmaze

macrumors 68000
Mar 7, 2012
1,692
328
it's a good concept, just hope apple can execute well.

so many what if in this concept, like what if 1 device have 2 apple id's, what if the activation server is down, what if I want to sell the iphone to other person can I change the apple id easily (i'm guessing it is embed with firmware this feature), thats just some things on top of my head.
 

j4m13

macrumors member
Jul 21, 2013
63
37
I'm amazed at how Apple can do this.

It seems to override even DFU mode? So this must be very low level bootrom stuff here ...

You can still Restore the iPhone in DFU mode if you have activated Find my iPhone. It is only apparent when you go to activate the device, then it asks for your iCloud details to reactivate the device.
 

Geckotek

macrumors G3
Jul 22, 2008
8,730
280
NYC
Yea as if Mr gubmint here isn't gettin a free iPhone 5S after making such positive comments.

Let's see how it really performs once it hits the streets and subways of NYC

Wow, really? "gubmint"? Free iPhone?

Some people just think everything is a conspiracy.

Yeah the phone companies should be responsible for fixing this. That way we don't have to prosecute the criminals as usual. :rolleyes:

Let's see, we can pay millions in tax dollars chasing down criminals or we can put in preventative measures that make the items less appealing to thieves.....:rolleyes:
 

ericinboston

macrumors 68000
Jan 13, 2008
1,959
405
I don't see how phone theft/loss is any kind of issue that warrants District Attorneys, governments, and phone manufacturers to somehow deter it.

1)Don't lose your phone
2)Smartphones are all software...regardless of how one "secures it", a true thief will know this and either he/she or the "black market" will easily unlock it. Period.
3)Laptops have been lost/stolen for decades and you don't see Apple/Wintel working to prevent that. What about iPods, cd-walkmans, watches, handbags, etc? Again, don't lose your stuff and/or leave it around where it has a fair chance of being stolen.
4)If your phone gets lost or stolen, big deal...you call your Carrier, they assure you won't be billed to data/calls it makes, you plunk down $$$ for another phone, and you move on. Sure, you may have lost your pictures or possibly opened up your email to a thief...but a)go change your password(s) on your email system super ASAP and b)life's tough...so you lost some pictures.
5)How about this scenario: You buy a used phone on eBay or from a friend and days later the seller reports the phone stolen just to be a jerk.
6)I understand that smartphones are relatively small so they fit in pockets...and could be misplaced or pick-pocketed or even just fall out due to their size...but so are wallets, jewelry, and cash. Again, don't lose the phone just like you try hard not to lose your wallet, jewelry, and cash.


This topic has been talked about for over a year and it always is made to sound like a band of criminals is following you down the street waiting to knock you unconscious and steal your phone. Not in the USA...and not in most civilized countries.
 
Last edited:

Robert.Walter

macrumors 68020
Jul 10, 2012
2,152
2,652
I'm not a fan of big government, but this looks more like the way things should work. That is, DAs note that there is a rash of a particular kind of crime and put out a call to request that businesses making those products come up with their own ideas to address the problem.

Much better than the traditional government approach of mandating a particular solution that a) stifles innovative concepts that someone else might come with, and b) probably doesn't work.

I'm more familiar with government mandating a performance standard (eg FMVSS, mpg rules, etc. ), with industry and public input, and the leaving it up to industry to develop solutions to meet that standard.

Those cases where a specific solution is required would seem to be far fewer than a performance requirement approach.
 

KandyKane

macrumors 6502
Mar 23, 2009
367
44
Australia
I wonder if there will be a way around this. I work for a telco and you'd be surprised at the amount of stupid people out there who'd somehow lock themselves out and demand that they never had an AppleID...
 

TylerL

macrumors regular
Jan 2, 2002
196
244
I'm amazed at how Apple can do this.
It seems to override even DFU mode? So this must be very low level bootrom stuff here ...

As I understand it, every iOS device needs to be activated over the internet before use, either over cellular, WiFi, or connected to a laptop (with an internet connection) through iTunes.
Activation Lock simply adds an extra step of logging in using the Apple ID of the person who last turned on Find My iPhone for the device. No password, no activation.

The only way around this would be an old-school low-level jailbreak with hacktivation.
 

Robert.Walter

macrumors 68020
Jul 10, 2012
2,152
2,652
I don't see how phone theft/loss is any kind of issue that warrants District Attorneys, governments, and phone manufacturers to somehow deter it.

1)Don't lose your phone
2)Smartphones are all software...regardless of how one "secures it", a true thief will know this and either he/she or the "black market" will easily unlock it. Period.
3)Laptops have been lost/stolen for decades and you don't see Apple/Wintel working to prevent that. What about iPods, cd-walkmans, watches, handbags, etc? Again, don't lose your stuff and/or leave it around where it has a fair chance of being stolen.
4)If your phone gets lost or stolen, big deal...you call your Carrier, they assure you won't be billed to data/calls it makes, you plunk down $$$ for another phone, and you move on. Sure, you may have lost your pictures or possibly opened up your email to a thief...but a)go change your password(s) on your email system super ASAP and b)life's tough...so you lost some pictures.
5)How about this scenario: You buy a used phone on eBay or from a friend and days later the seller reports the phone stolen just to be a jerk.



This topic has been talked about for over a year and it always is made to sound like a band of criminals is following you down the street waiting to knock you unconscious and steal your phone. Not in the USA...and not in most civilized countries.

So many errors of thought in the above it deserves a rebuttal, but I don't have the time.
 

j4m13

macrumors member
Jul 21, 2013
63
37
This topic has been talked about for over a year and it always is made to sound like a band of criminals is following you down the street waiting to knock you unconscious and steal your phone. Not in the USA...and not in most civilized countries.

Really! Read this Article!

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/art...eople-day-targeted-bike-riding-criminals.html

300 Phones a day snatched from people while using the phone!
Thats only in the UK alone!

Please get your facts straight before shouting off about how useless this is!

If it stops a few people from getting stabbed, shot or killed, then this is certainly a worth while addition!
 

moobatticus

macrumors member
Aug 30, 2012
44
2
Oh, can you imagine the scandal when a workaround is achieved within minutes of iOS 7 being available? Wait for it... Lock Gate!!! ;)
 

juanmanas

macrumors 6502
Apr 7, 2010
336
0
Yea as if Mr gubmint here isn't gettin a free iPhone 5S after making such positive comments.

Let's see how it really performs once it hits the streets and subways of NYC

I don't know but i question somebody's repute. Classic.
 

bbeagle

macrumors 68040
Oct 19, 2010
3,450
2,742
Buffalo, NY
Smartphones are all software...regardless of how one "secures it", a true thief will know this and either he/she or the "black market" will easily unlock it. Period.

Smart phones are NOT just software - they are software and hardware combined. The iPhone has several permanent, unique serial numbers. The MAC address in the Wifi chip,the IMEI number in the main processing chip, and the Serial Number of the SIM (which can be removed).
 

alent1234

macrumors 603
Jun 19, 2009
5,688
170
I don't see how phone theft/loss is any kind of issue that warrants District Attorneys, governments, and phone manufacturers to somehow deter it.

1)Don't lose your phone
2)Smartphones are all software...regardless of how one "secures it", a true thief will know this and either he/she or the "black market" will easily unlock it. Period.
3)Laptops have been lost/stolen for decades and you don't see Apple/Wintel working to prevent that. What about iPods, cd-walkmans, watches, handbags, etc? Again, don't lose your stuff and/or leave it around where it has a fair chance of being stolen.
4)If your phone gets lost or stolen, big deal...you call your Carrier, they assure you won't be billed to data/calls it makes, you plunk down $$$ for another phone, and you move on. Sure, you may have lost your pictures or possibly opened up your email to a thief...but a)go change your password(s) on your email system super ASAP and b)life's tough...so you lost some pictures.
5)How about this scenario: You buy a used phone on eBay or from a friend and days later the seller reports the phone stolen just to be a jerk.
6)I understand that smartphones are relatively small so they fit in pockets...and could be misplaced or pick-pocketed or even just fall out due to their size...but so are wallets, jewelry, and cash. Again, don't lose the phone just like you try hard not to lose your wallet, jewelry, and cash.


This topic has been talked about for over a year and it always is made to sound like a band of criminals is following you down the street waiting to knock you unconscious and steal your phone. Not in the USA...and not in most civilized countries.


phone theft is run by organized crime. cheaper and faster to get apple and samsung to design phones that make it harder to be used while stolen than to spend years investigating these rings

just like car thefts in the 80's. the auto makers made it harder to steal cars, and thefts dropped

some wintel laptops have a hardware based anti-theft system
 

juanmanas

macrumors 6502
Apr 7, 2010
336
0
I don't see how phone theft/loss is any kind of issue that warrants District Attorneys, governments, and phone manufacturers to somehow deter it.

1)Don't lose your phone
2)Smartphones are all software...regardless of how one "secures it", a true thief will know this and either he/she or the "black market" will easily unlock it. Period.
3)Laptops have been lost/stolen for decades and you don't see Apple/Wintel working to prevent that. What about iPods, cd-walkmans, watches, handbags, etc? Again, don't lose your stuff and/or leave it around where it has a fair chance of being stolen.
4)If your phone gets lost or stolen, big deal...you call your Carrier, they assure you won't be billed to data/calls it makes, you plunk down $$$ for another phone, and you move on. Sure, you may have lost your pictures or possibly opened up your email to a thief...but a)go change your password(s) on your email system super ASAP and b)life's tough...so you lost some pictures.
5)How about this scenario: You buy a used phone on eBay or from a friend and days later the seller reports the phone stolen just to be a jerk.
6)I understand that smartphones are relatively small so they fit in pockets...and could be misplaced or pick-pocketed or even just fall out due to their size...but so are wallets, jewelry, and cash. Again, don't lose the phone just like you try hard not to lose your wallet, jewelry, and cash.


This topic has been talked about for over a year and it always is made to sound like a band of criminals is following you down the street waiting to knock you unconscious and steal your phone. Not in the USA...and not in most civilized countries.

I could refute pretty much your whole statement. But im too busy.
 
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