Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Apple will enable consumers to lock stolen iPhones; ants from South America can eat consumer electronics components

There are two unrelated developments yesterday that can affect mobile and home Internet “robustness”.

One is that Apple will make it easier to permanently disable a stolen iPhone quickly.  But this subject has already been approached before, especially by Washington DC Police Chied Kathy Lanier.  If consumers make it harder for thieves to get any value for what they steal, could this backfire and embolden them into even more brazen acts?

Apple says that the "kill switch" will be part of IOS 7 phones (CNN  weblink for story).  This feature would make the phone totally imoperable forever, not just wipe the memory clean.   

One problem is that two-step verification is of course jeopardized after a phone is stolen, assuming that consumers leave their phones signed on to Google, Twitter, and the like.  I presume that the banks will come up with two-step verification soon.

The other issue is physical.  In Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, amd Florida, “crazy tawny” red ants, from South America, with no natural predators, are invading homes and destroying electronics, eating wires and possibly creating home fire hazards.  Apparently they can eat some of the raw materials inside a computer.  Let’s hope they don’t move north.  (CNN is source.)  

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