Greg (a pseudonym) steal each a smartphone is the iPhone. The 19-year-old a thief in the “career” stole a total 5 cell phone, 2 of them in one day by stealing.
the last time he stealing is in May 2013, a quiet neighborhood close to the coast of San Francisco. That the situation is bad to steal. Originally he is going to steal a iPhone 5, apple’s latest product but in the end he only steal to the iPhone 4. The price of the iPhone 4 on the black market is only half of the iPhone 5, he got only $100. Worse, he because of theft smartphones are caught, for the first time and was sent to the youth.
in the detention center, the staff is not surprised for his crimes. Greg said: “when I was detained, the first thing they asked me: ‘mobile phones, right? ‘”
for today’s street criminals, especially the teenagers, the smartphone is the first choice for stealing. According to San Francisco public defender, as of June 2013, San Francisco, nearly two-thirds of the minor robbery case involves a mobile phone.
government officials say it appears to have formed a trend. In the United States, every 10 people using smart phones have a mobile phone was stolen. Throughout 2013, a total of more than 2013 ten thousand people encounter mobile phone theft cases, the number is almost 2 times a year ago.
in technology atmosphere thick and San Francisco, 2014 more than 65% of a few months before robbery are related to mobile devices. According to the California senator Mark Leno, in Oakland bay, that figure jumped to 75%. Senator Mark Leno submitted a bill, the bill requires smartphone to load switch “suicide”. In late August, governor Jerry Brown signed the bill, the requirements in July 2015, after all sales within the territory of California smartphone must include the technology. The security application allows users to lock their missing equipment, cannot be used by others, this makes stealing mobile phones become meaningless.
Greg is tall but not strong, but his shaking hands is very strong also very gentle. It is this kind of situation made him stealing technology: can quickly urgent spare cell phone from the victim, rather than relying on the technology of pickpocketing grasp skilled.
when I first met Greg, he was wearing striped shirt, black pants, wearing grey thin tie. After the interview, he quickly back to the company in the bay area, continue to practice work.
but in May 2013, Greg fell into a more desperate situation. Shoe he from the house not far from the sidewalk, there is a about 20 years old of Asian woman is standing on her car phone.
when I asked him if he would choose a specific situation to rob, Greg embarrassed admitted: “yes, this is a kind of prejudice. If I don’t think there will be a fight, that I am not going to grab the phone.”
due to growth in the host family, and met a bunch of friends, Greg walked from every evil way, that also received twice for criminal charges and a prison sentence. He hesitated before robbery, after all, he has not had trouble for 18 months. But he didn’t work, there is a 9 month old daughter need him to support, her mother in a couple of months ago was detected with cancer, the whole family are her disability to earn a living.
Greg parked the car in the street corner, his girlfriend, that is, her mother sat on location. He slowly toward his goal, take phone quickly, quickly run away. Then he drove to the central square, where is famous for buying and selling stolen mobile phones. Although he successfully sold mobile phone, but when he is ready to leave, the police stopped him.
police by the user in the Find My iPhone application tracking for mobile phones, and Find the Greg. The police on the beverage holder Greg found that $100. He said: “I could wake up off the hook because arrest me when my body is not stolen phones. But my girlfriend in a car, if they are charged, so no one can take care of my daughter. So I have to accept a trial.”
in his close in youth that Greg’s mother died two weeks, he began to rethink his life and steal your life.
“ feeding pigeons ”
the San Francisco police patrol Shaughn Ryan pointed to is on the Tenderloin block, the block is one of the most bad blocks the San Francisco police) Leavenworth and O ‘Farrell street corner woman said: “the victim.” The woman carrying a big cream-colored purse, staring at the iPhone.
she is not the real victims, but it’s easy to become a victim. Eyes staring at the phone’s screen, about everything around them without feeling. Ryan stopped a police car and rolled down his window, it is suggested that the woman pay attention to the place where she was going to. The lady said she would go to the corner of a popular bar, then shy accepted and left quickly. (after a few minutes, Ryan went to the bar to see if the lady in the bar.)
on memorial day weekend on Friday evening, I sat in the car, and Ryan and his partner Kevin about police officers patrol together, and I have tried to come up from the street understand why smart phone theft is so rampant. Police officers know that I want to write stories about the smart phone theft, so one night three, four potential victims are pointed out. But I think they can use anyone as a potential victim, so I try not affected by their views.
in through the crowded streets of downtown San Francisco, in the process of our car passed a halfway house, a Tony art gallery, a macy’s flagship store, also saw a flank the injured man. Through these areas like super Mario tunnel. Here a mixture of poor and rich, loss and opportunity caused here be steal a hotbed of crime.
police officers told me that every street in Tenderloin district is are the representative of the stolen goods. Market street and 7th avenue the representation of the item is a smart phone. Patrol passed before Greg was arrested, on the corner of the street corner is a shrouded in San Francisco’s city hall under the shadow of the open square. A group of young people in their 20 s and 30 s are counting on Carl ‘s Jr. window, officers suspected that this is the place where they are traded.
“Horan said:” here is the birthplace of the smart phone business to steal market.”
when a child with a smartphone to show off their own goods, a large group of people. World of Stereo shopkeepers Marwan Eadeh said: “it’s like to feed the pigeons.” Researchers aren’t sure where it would be most stolen smartphones eventually sold to the site. Some will flow to the local flea market, some may be far to Peru and Hong Kong.
black market buyers who are looking for those not locked or not was protected by security functions of mobile phones, because those who have the security features to protect mobile phone is difficult to restore the original factory Settings. Greg said, because the new iPhone or run apple’s iOS phone 7 system will have these security features to protect, so the old cell phone on the black market will be more popular.
wireless phone service providers will also affect the price of the streets. Greg, AT& T and t-mobile Mobile phone price is higher, because they apply to the global communications, easily diverted abroad. One of the most popular is the latest iPhone, no lock, run the city AT& T or t-mobile network. The price of 5 s is constantly changing, the last time I communicate with Greg price for $300 to $400, $650 now. And the same model is run the other network of mobile phone may only sells for $100 or $150, or less. According to police officers, a samsung Galaxy S5 is not locked, the original price is $660, as long as the $100 to $200 in the street.
although every phone has its own ranking, but in most cases among thieves or steal to get mobile phone. Greg said: “in this game, there is nothing to consider, you sell is not his own things, after all.”
in San Francisco, police said apple to cooperate with the police trap can be traced back to 2009. But this kind of set trap method not touches the heart of the problem.
lawmakers that “switch” suicide application can touch the core of the problem. Samsung and apple, two of the world’s largest smartphone makers have this app preinstalled into the mobile phone users through this app can remotely lock phone and delete data. Google’s latest Android mobile phone operating system version also includes the application. Like California’s bill would require security applications automatically enabled, rather than requiring users to start up. Released in September 8 has set this app to apple’s iOS default.
Tenderloin San Francisco police substation of Jason Cherniss captain said: “this is not a question of force, they need to break down stolen mobile phones, make it become worthless.”
although Minnesota no way of enforcing this app must be set to the default, but it is the first “suicide switch” bills were passed. New York attorney general Eric Schneiderman also take the lead in put forward the proposal in the state of New York.
but not everyone supports the bill. Operators think hackers may use suicide, for example, switching applications. Wireless industry also said that they have to create the tools to prevent the smart phone was stolen. CTIA, a representative of the telecom industry trade organization), external and state affairs vice President Jamie Hastings, these tools include one for in the report and track stolen mobile database and a campaign to teach people how to avoid being stolen.
“switch” suicide supporters question the motives of operators pointed out that in the wireless companies and insurance interests between trading partners. Support bill of California San Francisco district attorney George Gascony, said: “in addition to interest, there is absolutely no any arguments.”
at the end of 2012, Gascony led a protest against the smartphone theft. Eventually, he with America’s main operators, hardware manufacturers such as apple, samsung, and manufacturers of security applications such as Lookout met, in order to find a solution. Lookout former security research director Marc Rogers once participated in the early meeting, he said, most of the early work to let both sides all stand on the same line.
“man, worth stealing cell phones?”
if, suicide switch application is for the purpose of the mobile phone theft is meaningless, so youth organizations Mo ‘Magic is that the purpose of those potential thieves, stealing a mobile phone is a kind of stupid behavior.
Mo ‘Magic Fillmore is headquartered in San Francisco area. In June last year, they and local people’s procuratorate and the public defender’s office at city hall held a rally outside the door. More than 700 from around the neighborhood children, teenagers and supporters took part in the rally, to protest the smartphone theft.
this is San Francisco public defense lawyer Jeff Adachi want to strive for. His office is in different city youth organizations “knowing” activities on a regular basis. During the meeting, he insisted to steal a smartphone is a crime. In California, three or more serious criminal crime, means that the longer term. nullnullnullnullnull