Samsung has revealed its TVs can be remotely disabled if the corporate finds out the items have been stolen. The characteristic is known as the “Television Block Function” and Samsung says it was lately activated in South Africa after numerous Samsung TVs have been taken from an organization warehouse throughout a wave of protests and unrest final month.
Samsung says the expertise is “already pre-loaded on all Samsung TV merchandise” and “ensures that the tv units can solely be utilized by the rightful house owners with a sound proof of buy.” It’s not clear, although, from Samsung’s description whether or not the characteristic is barely meant to fight large-scale theft, or if it’ll ever be used to assist particular person shoppers.
For the TV Block Operate to work, Samsung must know serial code of the stolen unit. When the set connects to the web, it checks its serial code in opposition to a listing on Samsung’s servers, and disables all TV performance if it finds a match.
Blocking the TVs stolen in South Africa was presumably comparatively simple. They’d been taken from Samsung’s personal warehouse, the place the corporate could be monitoring its stock. It’s doable that a median buyer whose TV is stolen would be capable to report its serial code to the corporate to have it remotely disabled, but it surely’s not clear if Samsung affords or plans to supply such a service. (We’ve reached out to the corporate to ask and can replace this story if we hear again.)
The corporate does say, although, that within the occasion that prospects in South Africa have one in all their TVs blocked accidentally, they’ll have the block lifted by sending a proof of buy to firstname.lastname@example.org.