Message from Chief Cathy Lanier
I am attaching the news article below, pertaining to a spike in robberies, related to Apple electronics in New York City. In April of this year, the FCC Chairman Genachowski joined Senator Schumer, DC Mayor Gray, State Police Departments and wireless carriers to announce new initiatives to combat massive smartphone and data theft. You can read more about it using the link below. The wireless industry committed to implementing these changes next month. Consumers can protect themselves by being aware of their surroundings (meaning walking without distractions and paying attention to who is around you) and by participating in the wireless industry’s program so that we can eliminate the black market sales of stolen electronics.
Cathy L. Lanier
Chief of Police
Metropolitan Police Department
Wireless industry commits to centralized database system in six months to prevent reactivation of stolen cell phones, consumer campaign: http://mpdc.dc.gov/release/fcc-chairman-genachowski-joins-senator-schumer-dc-mayor-gray-state-police-departments-and
- By JAMIE SCHRAM and KATE SHEEHY
- Last Updated: 6:05 AM, September 25, 2012
- Posted: 1:26 AM, September 25, 2012
- Source: http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/manhattan/it_cr_me_wave_XXEdyVTH88Zq3URYvEcNUK
Crime is up, but don’t blame the NYPD — blame Apple.
The number of thefts of iPhones, iPods, iPads and other hot gadgets in the Big Apple has soared 40 percent so far this year — well over the 4 percent jump in overall city crime, according to NYPD statistics released yesterday.
There have been 11,447 thefts of Apple products here since January — an increase of 3,280 such incidents over the same period last year.
Meanwhile, the total number of crimes year to date is 79,335, an increase of 3,015.
“It doesn’t shock me in the least,’’ said one law-enforcement source.
“The victims are walking around . . . listening to their iPhones or reading them, not paying attention to their surroundings, and the perp just comes up behind them and snatches it.
“It seems like everybody who comes in to report these thefts complains that their iPhone just got stolen and they can’t ID the perp because it all happens very fast and they are tuned out.”
Many of the thefts occur on subways and buses, “from Houston Street to 125th Street,’’ the source said.
“It happens in areas where you have affluent people who can afford these products — Midtown, Greenwich Village — and hipsters are among the targets,” the source said.
Police Commissioner Ray Kelly warned that while the NYPD has taken steps to combat the whopping number of thefts, the public also has to help.
“Individuals alert to their surroundings are less likely to become victims of thefts of iPhones and other hand-held devices,” Kelly said in a statement.
Over the weekend — as the heavily anticipated new iPhone 5 hit stores — cops flocked to six Apple shops in the city to urge people to register their new phones’ serial numbers and their own contact information using the free “Find My iPhone’’ app, which helps police track down the gadgets if they’re stolen.
Officers with “Operation ID” also staged phone registration drives at seven Verizon and eight AT&T stores.
The NYPD also said that people who bring their devices to local station houses can get them engraved with a serial number to better identify them if they’re swiped.
The NYPD said that in addition to pushing phone registration, they try to educate people to become more aware of their surroundings and to be on the lookout for potential thieves.
Cops also rely on decoy operations to nab thieves on the subway and on stings to bust fencing rings.
Additional reporting by Natasha Velez
Plan TODAY for what’s on the way. September is National Emergency Preparedness Month. To learn how to prepare & to sign up for critical emergency alerts, go to www.72hours.dc.gov.