Samsung has added a handy function to its Smart TVs to safeguard merchants and prevent the illicit sale of TVs on the black market. Samsung’s South African subsidiary has unveiled a new Television Block option for all Samsung televisions. It allows merchants and authorized employees to remotely disable the functions of stolen televisions.
In an official blog post, Samsung introduced the functionality. The function is designed to safeguard the business’s retailers and prevent the “development of secondary marketplaces related to the selling of illicit items,” according to the company. As a result, Samsung TV sets obtained through unlawful ways will be unable to work correctly once linked to the internet.
To get into the specifics, the TV Block Function has been enabled on all Samsung TVs throughout the world. By default, it will be switched on. If a user tries to connect a Samsung Smart TV that has been stolen or plundered from the company’s warehouse, the serial number of the TV will be recognized by the server.
It will then remotely disable all of the stolen item’s functions. If a legal customer’s Samsung TV is accidentally blocked by the company’s server, they can provide evidence of purchase or a valid TV license to get their TVs operating again.
“This technology can have a positive impact at this time, and will also be of use to both the industry and customers in the future,” said the Director of Consumer Electronics at Samsung, Mike Van Lier.
“As an organization we acknowledge the critical role in giving our customers and client the peace of mind. Working together, we can overcome the impact of the unprecedented disruption to business, as experienced by many of us recently. We will continue to review the situation and will make adjustments as necessary to ensure business continuity for all,” Lier further added.
There’s also a case to be made that kill switches aren’t simply a nice feature to have; they’re a responsible function that we should appreciate. As more gadgets become linked and reliant on the internet, there are exponentially more opportunities for mischief. The Internet of Things has already reached unimaginable proportions, and it shows no signs of slowing down anytime soon.
We’ve become accustomed to app stores being able to remotely deactivate or remove specific apps if they show to be dangerous. If necessary, service providers such as Google, Apple, and others might disable your account. The concept of remotely bricking your phone, TV, fridge, or even automobile if they’re used for malicious purposes isn’t that far-fetched.
It would be a drastic move, to be sure, and one that no one should take lightly, from manufacturers to customers to regulators. There are real-time privacy and accountability problems, and this ought to be more than a footnote in the Terms of Service.
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