Do not buy a used iPhoneor phone without doing this first! For anyone shopping for a used iPhone or Androidphone, your top priority should be to check to find out if the iPhone or phone has been stolen or reported as lost.
The reason is simple; a stolen iPhone or phone that has been reported as lost may not work at all if the cellular carrier has blocked the device from accessing a wireless network, this essentially means that buying a stolen iPhone or phone could be a waste of the money (not to mention engaging in the trade of stolen goods).
Keep in mind that, while these methods will work if the iPhone’s owner has reported it as lost or stolen, there is no technical way to determine whether or not an unreported iPhone is stolen.
- Open IMEI Pro. Go to http://imeipro.info/in your computer’s web browser. This website serves as an international blacklist checker for reported stolen or missing iPhones.
- Enter the IMEI number. Type your iPhone’s IMEI number into the text field in the middle of the page. You can’t check your iPhone’s MEID number on this site.
- Check the “I’m not a robot” box. It’s below the text field.
- Click CHECK. This is to the right of the text field. Doing so will search the global stolen/lost blacklist for your IMEI number.
- Scroll down to the “Blacklist status” heading. It’s at the bottom of the list of IMEI information.
- Review the blacklist rating. If you see “CLEAN” here, your iPhone is not on the global stolen/lost registry.
Any other word to the right of the “Blacklist status” heading means that your iPhone has been reported as lost or stolen.
The good newsis the CTIA, which represents the US wireless communications industry, has set up a super easy-to-use website that allows you to easily check to find out if any iPhone or any smartphone has been stolen or reported as lost. The website is aptly named StolenPhoneChecker.organd it works by running an IMEI, MEID, or ESN number through the database and it will report back if a device has been reported as lost or stolen.
This is a super easy two-step process, all you need is the phones IMEI number and you can run it against a central database setup by the phone companies:
- Get the IMEI number from the iPhone or Android phone, you can also do this by dialing *#06# on the phone
- Go to StolenPhoneChecker.orghere to check and enter your IMEI number into the website
- If the iPhone or phone is reported as stolen or lost, you should strongly consider NOT buying it and instead finding a different device to buy
- That’s all there is to it, you can check up to five devices’ IMEI numbers per day to see if they are stolen or lost or not.
- Open Swappa. Go to https://swappa.com/esnin your computer’s web browser. Swappa is a commercial site that maintains a blacklist of phones which have been reported stolen. You can run 10 free checks per day on Swappa.
- Enter your iPhone’s IMEI. Type the IMEI number into the field labeled “ESN/IMEI/MEID” near the top of the window.
- Click Check ESN. It’s to the right of the text field. Doing so checks your iPhone’s IMEI number against Swappa’s database of stolen or lost iPhones.
- Review the “Blacklisted” section. You’ll find this section in the middle of the page. If you see “Not Indicated” here, that means your iPhone is not reported as lost/stolen.
- Check the MEID number as well. While unlikely, there’s a chance that your iPhone’s MEID number was recorded instead of the IMEI during the lost/stolen report:
- Type the MEID number into the “ESN/IMEI/MEID” text box.
- Click Check ESN
- Review the results.