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California Governor Jerrry Brown signed a bill to deter smartphone theft via a kill switch. News10/KXTV

A requirement that new smartphones be equipped with a kill switch in the event they are stolen was signed into law by Gov. Brown Monday.

Senate Bill 962 directs smartphones manufacturers to equip their product with anti-theft technology that deactivates the device inoperable if stolen. How manufacturers meet the requirement is up to them.

According to the National Consumers League, 1.6 million Americans had a handheld device stolen in 2012.

The law applies to smartphones made on or after July 1, 2015, and sold in California after that date.

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