Analysis, discussion and opinions by members of Newsday's editorial board.

Dolman: Big Apple has an iProblem with stolen Apple products

Here a great bit of news in an otherwise dismal 2012: New York City closed out the year with homicides at a 50-year low. The New York Police Department recorded  approximately 414 killings last year, compared with 2,020 in 1992 and 2,245 in 1990.

The political and business classes are ecstatic, naturally. They see one more sign that the city has shed its seediness from the 1970s and 1980s and has reclaimed its rightful place as a living monument to the wonders of free enterprise — a town that pulsates 24/7 with a growing, highly motivated mass of residents, workers and visitors.

Unfortunately — there's just one problem. It’s a troubling 3.3 percent increase in the city’s overall major crime index from 2011. How does the New York Police Department explain that?

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The NYPD says the index would actually be down for the year if you erased an increase in the number of stolen Apple products -- iPhones, iPads and iPods by the thousands.

"We're working with Apple and customers of Apple to try to counteract” the thefts, Paul Browne, the NYPD deputy commissioner of public information, told WNYC-radio’s Amy Eddings. “We tracked electronic devices,” Browne said. "As Apple thefts went up, their competitors' thefts went down. It's a reflection of the marketplace.”

So how do we guard against savvy thieves?

Bloomberg offers this idea for those who pack iPhones: “Put it in a pocket — in more body-fitting, tighter clothes, [so] you can feel if it was, if somebody put their hand in your pocket — not just an outside coat pocket.”

Gotcha, Mr. Mayor. If anyone knows how to make the invisible hand of the marketplace behave, it’s you. Thanks for the tip.

Tags: apple , ipod , iphone , ipad , crime , new york city , nypd , michael bloomberg

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