With Apple, Google, HTC, Huawei, Motorola, Nokia and Samsung; Microsoft has signed a commitment with the CTIA to not just allow users to remotely wipe their phones if lost or stolen, but to also render them inoperable or “brick” them, thereby not just protecting the user data but removing the incentive for thieves to steal smartphones.
The move is a response to various initiatives by several municipalities in USA, and has the backing of the five largest U.S. cellular carriers.
Even after being bricked, users will still be able to reactivate devices once recovered. A similar feature is already available in iOS and some Samsung Android handsets. On iOS phones can only be reactivated by entering the correct iTunes password.
CTIA President Steve Largent hailed the move, saying:
“We appreciate the commitment made by these companies to protect wireless users in the event their smartphones are lost or stolen. This flexibility provides consumers with access to the best features and apps that fit their unique needs while protecting their smartphones and the valuable information they contain. At the same time, it’s important different technologies are available so that a ‘trap door’ isn’t created that could be exploited by hackers and criminals.”
Is being able to brick your phone a feature our readers would appreciate or are you concerned that some-one malicious may be able to remotely deactivate your phone? Let us know below.