Verizon Wireless and other major companies have joined the voluntary program

The CTIA and the top five U.S. wireless carriers have teamed up on what they call the Smartphone Anti-theft Voluntary Commitment. This is a voluntary effort by the industry to help reduce smartphone theft in the U.S. Reducing smartphone theft is a huge concern since it is one of the most common types of theft in the country.
The Smartphone Anti-Theft Voluntary Commitment sees participants agree that each new smartphone sold after July 2015 will offer certain anti-theft apps pre-loaded or available to download. The features will allow the remote wipe of user data.
The agreement will also include software that can render the smartphone inoperable to an unauthorized user. Unauthorized users will also be blocked from reactivating the phone without the authorized user's permission. One of the big features is that the smartphone has to be able to be reactivated by the authorized user if it is recovered.

iOS 7 Activation Lock
Companies like Apple already include similar functionality in devices that support iOS 7. For example, iOS 7 includes Activation Lock (which is enabled when you turn on “Find My iPhone”) that requires your Apple ID and password to be entered before you can:
  • Turn off Find My iPhone on your device
  • Erase your device
  • Reactivate and use your device 
CTIA says that the following companies are participating with the voluntary effort: Apple Inc.; Asurion; AT&T; Google Inc.; HTC America, Inc.; Huawei Device USA; Motorola Mobility LLC; Microsoft Corporation; Nokia, Inc.; Samsung Telecommunications America, L.P.; Sprint Corporation; T-Mobile USA; U.S. Cellular; and Verizon Wireless.
“We appreciate the commitment made by these companies to protect wireless users in the event their smartphones are lost or stolen,” said Steve Largent, President and CEO, CTIA. “By working together with policymakers, law enforcement and consumers, we will deter theft and protect users’ personal information on smartphones.”  

Source: CTIA

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