The Tech Report points attention to the fact that besides a remote wiping functionality, which was recently added, Android now also has a remote device locking feature. Both features were present on Apple's iOS for quite some time. These features can be accessed via the Android Device Manager.
If you're worried that your device has fallen into the wrong hands, there are a couple of options. You can wipe it remotely, erasing all user data from the device, or you can lock down the device with a new PIN. The remote wipe functionality has been around since August, but the remote locking feature is new. Android Police discovered it yesterday, even though Google hasn't said a peep about it.
Android users can access their devices' remote management preferences through Google Settings. Remote location is enabled by default on my Galaxy Nexus, while remote wiping and locking require opting in. Since devices can be managed remotely with little more than a web browser and Google account password, that's probably a smart default configuration. Enabling remote locking and wiping makes devices vulnerable if your Google password is compromised.