Apple And NYPD Form Partnership, Hope To Stop iDevice Theft

So many Apple iPhone and iPad devices are stolen in New York City that the company has partnered with the NYPD to retrieve those lost devices.

The New York Police Department has assembled a dedicated team whose sole mission it is to hunt down stolen Apple devices and identify thieves.

The program works by having NYPD officers retrieve the IMEI of a stolen device from the victim of the theft or via online records. The company then submits the data it collects to Apple headquarters in Cupertino, California.

Once Apple has IMEI information, the company is able to track those devices and hunt down thieves with the help of NYPD staffers.

The program could be helped along even more in late 2013 or early 2014 when a new cross-carrier database is launched.

Speaking about the new theft prevention partnership with Apple, NYPD spokesman Paul Browne says:

“We’re looking for ways to find individuals who have stolen Apple products and return the products to their original owners. It is being done to learn the pattern who is stealing.”

Seventy-four percent of all Apple iDevice’s stolen in New York City resurface inside the cities limits. Most stolen devices are sold as second-hand devices on the open market.

While the ability to track smartphones and tablets based on their unique identifier has been around for years, the NYPD’s partnership with Apple is a first of its kind on such a large scale.

Do you think partnering directly with law enforcement is a good way for technology company’s to offer better protection for their customers?