How not to buy a stolen phone!

By : |May 12, 2017 0

Well, buying a used phone is not just good on your pockets but great for the environment too. Sometimes, when you feel that your type of phone is still not in the market, going refurbished way is a better idea than splurging money on some exorbitantly priced smartphone just for the heck of it. But it isn’t as simple as it seems to be.

Looks are deceptive

CIOL How not to buy a stolen phone!

While, choosing a model could be easier given the plethora of reviews, buying a legitimate device could be tricky. Wondering what’s that? Let me explain. Every year millions of phones are stolen around the world and where do they land up? Obviously where you go to buy a used phone. But, worry not. Not all the used phones are stolen and importantly, it isn’t that difficult to ensure that the used handset you buy is not lifted.

Stolen Phone Checker

CIOL how not to buy a stolen phone

If you are buying a used phone in the US, you have got a very simple and convenient way to check on the device you wish to purchase.

The US wireless sector has come up with a tool called the Stolen Phone Checker, that lets you know whether a phone has been reported lost or stolen. The ‘phone checker’ checks on the device’s unique codes such as IMEI, MEID, or ESN — assigned to every phone and saves you unnecessary hassles of buying a stolen phone that won’t work.

Notably, there are individual third party tool checkers too that offer pretty much the same services but the site launched by the wireless industry itself, through its trade group the CTIA is being touted as the one with the most updated data and a must-visit before you swipe your card.

Check on the seller

Actually, even before you check on the device’s IMEI or other codes, you need to be cautious about the e/retailer you choose. While zeroing upon a seller, choose the one with proper safeguards and policies in place for buyers like Amazon or eBay.

Put on your detective hat 

CIOL How not to buy a stolen phone

Once you have selected a site, do a thorough research on model’s description. Nothing could be better than contacting the owner directly and asking for additional photographs. Also, inquire about the IMEI or a serial number of the device. If the seller hesitates to share this bit, you need to change your preference.

If you are going in for some Apple device, don’t forget to visit ‘Check Activation Lock Status’ on This service will help you check if the handset you have selected was procured legally or not.

If you follow the above-mentioned steps, you will surely save yourself the trouble of buying a stolen phone and then running after or following up with the vendor. However, if in rarest of rare case, you do land up with a ‘privileged’ lifted phone, don’t forget to check on the return policies of the seller.


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