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LoJack for Samsung Galaxy S4 goes hard-core on thieves

LoJack's new Galaxy S4 security offering includes sending real people to retrieve your lost or stolen phone.

Samsung Galaxy S4
Josh Miller/CNET

LAS VEGAS -- There are apps and settings to locate a lost or stolen smartphone, and to remotely wipe the contents, but those will only get you so far if your phone's actually been nabbed.

On Tuesday, LoJack for Laptops maker Absolute Software announced the imminent release of LoJack for Android smartphones, starting with Samsung's Galaxy S4.

In the event that your smartphone disappears, through your own carelessness or malicious intent, LoJack's software offers remote locking and deleting to keep your photos, passwords, and other sensitive information private.

However, what you really pay for is the company's team of cybercrime-cracking "recovery specialists" who will attempt to go out and retrieve your absconded-with phone.

LoJack will be embedded in the Galaxy S4's firmware layer, where it remains dormant until you awaken it with a monthly subscription that becomes your theft insurance. This firmware situation is key -- even if robbers wipe your phone to the factory settings, LoJack is still active, and unremovable.

Most of the time, I don't look favorably on lingering bloatware, but for those who prefer an insurance policy like this, LoJack is selling peace of mind. How much does that cost? Pricing starts at $29.99 per year for subscriptions that range from one to four years.

LoJack's partnership with Samsung, initially unveiled this past April, is all part of the electronics titan's strategy with Samsung Knox, which layers more security software onto its phones.

Samsung has been pushing security as part of its bid to win over corporations and consumers who are concerned about Android security gaps.

LoJack for Android phones becomes available "early this summer," most likely in June.

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Update, Wednesday at 12:33 a.m. PT to correct pricing details.