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Minnesota Rep. Connie Bernady of Fridley, left, and Sen. Katie Sieben of Cottage Grove talk Wednesday, May 14, before a bill-signing ceremony updating state law to make mobile telephones less inviting to thieves. (Forum News Service photo by Don Davis)

Smartphone 'kill switch' required

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ST. PAUL -- Minnesota smartphones next year must include a way to disable them when stolen.

Gov. Mark Dayton signed a bill into law Wednesday requiring mobile telephone companies to include "skill switches" on smartphones and connected tablets sold beginning July 1, 2015. This new process will allow owners to disable lost and stolen devices as a way to discourage thefts.

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