Blacklisted phone?

magenta2848436

    I have a Galaxy Note 3 which I purchased on ebay, and has worked fine on t-mobile for over three years.  A short while ago it stopped connecting.  After spending much time on the phone with support, they decided that the phone had been blacklisted (possibly stolen?), not by t-mobile, but could not say anything else.  Then, shortly after that,  the phone started working fine again, connecting normally, but lasted only about a week.  This does not make any sense to me.  I contacted the seller who claims that there was no problem when sold, and they have seen phones blacklisted by mistake.  Clearly if this phone was stolen, someone would report it earlier than three years after the fact.  This whole situation seems unexplainable, and I would appreciate any thoughts or suggestions.

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      • joe1994

        Re: Blacklisted phone?

        Your always taking a risk purchasing phones through places like EBay. Another thing to consider is the Note 3 is going on 5 years. Its no longer supported with security patches or any software uupdates. One final thing to consider is you might have a faulty motherboard or processor.

          • magenta2848436

            Re: Blacklisted phone?

            That may be good advice, but it still does not address the blacklisting issue, which is more confounding.  I doubt it is the motherboard, as a second unit purchased with the first is also experiencing the same problem.

              • joe1994

                Re: Blacklisted phone?

                Where did the seller get the phone from? What doing a factory reset? I wonder if it could be a faulty transmitter or antennae?

                  • theartiszan

                    Re: Blacklisted phone?

                    Before going in circles, I would check the below site to see in the phone is indeed blacklisted. IMEI Status Check | See if Your Phone Works on T-Mobile 4G Network

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                    • magenta2848436

                      Re: Blacklisted phone?

                      No info from seller on origin.  How to do a factory reset, but why would this be needed?   What would have changed?  How to check transmitter or antennae?

                        • joe1994

                          Re: Blacklisted phone?

                          If you haven't done so already. I would start calling the other carrier's, explain the situation with your phone and see if it was reported stolen on their network. I believe once a phone has been reported stolen or lost by one carrier the device IEM is recorded in a national data base. That's really the only other thing I can think of.

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                            • magenta2848436

                              Re: Blacklisted phone?

                              That seems like a lot of effort, for questionable success.  And even if the listing carrier is identified, how to prove it isn't stolen?  One might suggest that in addition to the claim that this will deter phone thefts (doubtful?), it seems a good way to discourage used phone sales, and promote new carrier sales.

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                                • joe1994

                                  Re: Blacklisted phone?

                                  Phone thefts are here to stay. Unless of course the issue becomes so serious and out of control that a law is passed making it a capital offense in which the guilty is executed after a very short and extremely speedy trail. If you learned the phone was listed as stolen by say Verizon or Sprint and you could get documentation you could use this to get your money back. Of course the person who sold you the phone might be a victim as well. There is also a risk buying stuff off eBay or Craigslist. Hopefully you didn't pay a lot for the phone

                                    • magenta2848436

                                      Re: Blacklisted phone?

                                      I appreciate your comments, but they really do not address what I see are some basic flaws with the system.  There does not seem to be a practical way for users to query the blacklist database, or an understanding about who can blacklist phones.  It seems unlikely that this phone was reported as stolen three years after I bought it, so there must be something else going on.  It should be easier to determine who and why a phone was blacklisted.  On top of this, a second phone purchased at the same time also has been blacklisted, and then I discover that both phones have the same IMEI.  This suggests that others have a way to subvert the system, but there is no way to track what is happening.  The answer to only buy new phones directly from the carrier seems like one that will lead to greater profits and not a better functioning system.

                                        • smplyunprdctble

                                          Re: Blacklisted phone?

                                          Two phones with the same IMEI means there's something worse going on.  IMEI is a unique identifier.  If a device is reprogrammed with a different IMEI, it's next to guaranteed to be a stolen device.  It could be that these rewritten IMEIs were finally added to the system?

                          • tmo_mike_c

                            Re: Blacklisted phone?

                            I think it's a bit strange this happened after having the phone for so long, but it's really hard to say exactly what happened. The way it looks is that someone reported it stolen possibly to get a replacement phone through a claim. Again, it seems odd to do something like this after 3 years, but this is just my guess. When buying phones directly through the carrier, it's easier to track where the phones come from as well as any status updates on the IMEI through the systems we use. It gets a bit trickier when phones are purchased through 3rd party channels like ebay as the history of the device can be difficult to track.