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  1. Thread Author  Thread Author    #1  

    Default IMEI Changing? Can thieves really do this?

    My phone was stolen last night and none of my security software or Google device Finder can locate it. It's probably turned off purposely as it was almost fully charged 10PM

    ( I lost it at about 11:30) .

    I'm in Canada and we have an IMEI blacklist service which stops any company from allowing the phone to be used on their networks. But... I wonder if someone could just change the IMEI and use my phone? I see websites offering that as a service and a bit furious if this is possible.
  2. #2  

    Default Re: IMEI Changing? Can thieves really do this?

    Yep.... it's possible.... and more often than not, illegal. It is basically just a number.
  3. Thread Author  Thread Author    #3  

    Default Re: IMEI Changing? Can thieves really do this?

    Can't even begin to say how deeply disappointing that is... IMEI blocking was the only thing that I felt good about this afternoon hahaha
  4. #4  

    Default Re: IMEI Changing? Can thieves really do this?

    It is illegal but possible.

    dpham00, Android Central Moderator
    Sent from my Verizon Samsung Galaxy Note 3 via Tapatalk Pro
  5. Thread Author  Thread Author    #5  

    Default Re: IMEI Changing? Can thieves really do this?

    Well, if someone is brazen enough to steal a phone I somehow feel their dubious ethics won't stop them from wiping out my IMEI. I suppose it will be a game carriers, users, developers and thieves will be playing forever.
  6. #6  

    Default Re: IMEI Changing? Can thieves really do this?

    Quote Originally Posted by Shaneru View Post
    Well, if someone is brazen enough to steal a phone I somehow feel their dubious ethics won't stop them from wiping out my IMEI. I suppose it will be a game carriers, users, developers and thieves will be playing forever.
    Well... most are too stupid to even realize it. There are pages out there devoted to dips that stole a phone and provided a detailed pictorial of their post-theft exploits. But not all are morons.....
  7. Thread Author  Thread Author    #7  

    Default Re: IMEI Changing? Can thieves really do this?

    Whoever got mine was pretty bright...

    It was fully charged at 11PM I lost it between 11:32-11:42 PM. Phone was off after that time.
  8. #8  

    Default Re: IMEI Changing? Can thieves really do this?

    Quote Originally Posted by Shaneru View Post
    Whoever got mine was pretty bright...

    It was fully charged at 11PM I lost it between 11:32-11:42 PM. Phone was off after that time.
    Sorry to hear about by our misfortune. Hopefully you had some sort of warranty to help you replace it.

    Posted via Android Central App
  9. #9  

    Default Re: IMEI Changing? Can thieves really do this?

    They might be able to change it internally but they cant replace the factory sticker which has the original IMEI. Its wise to compare them.
  10. #10  

    Default Re: IMEI Changing? Can thieves really do this?

    Per USA legislation:

    "knowingly using, producing, trafficking in, having control or custody of, or possessing hardware or software knowing that it has been configured to insert or modify telecommunication identifying information associated with or contained in a telecommunications instrument so that such instrument may be used to obtain telecommunications service without authorization."

    I have changed IMEIs and ESNs in the past for myself, but for different reasons. I have wifi everywhere I go, but phone carriers require you to get a data plan with a smartphone. I just change my ESN/IMEI to make the carrier think it is the same phone and still use their cdma/gsm network for making calls and text messages. Usually can't do MMS as that tends to use a 3g(or higher) network and well, I don't have data. As the law states, I am not getting any service I am not paying for. Thus there are legal reasons for changing the ESN/IMEI, though cloning tends to skirt on illegal as it is assumed you are trying to use two phone in different locations at the same time, or you end up doing so by mistake.

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