U.S. Carriers Agree to Deny Service to Stolen Phones

Smartphones these days are expensive pieces of equipment, which makes them attractive targets for thieves. However, if a new shared database from major U.S. carriers is successful, the market for stolen cell phones is about to get a whole lot smaller.

Bloomberg reports that AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint, and Verizon have teamed up with the FCC to launch a new stolen phone database. The database will contain serial numbers of all phones reported stolen and the four major carriers have agreed to deny service to any handset that turns up in the database.

Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski said that carriers are prepared to start blocking service to stolen phones within six months. They hope that this new system will discourage cell phone thieves as well as protect victims' data.

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  • ksampanna
    I can't believe it took them so long. This should've been right since cellphones became mainstream
    23
  • flyflinger
    Hope they will add a feature that allows all of us to access the database to check for status of a used phone before buying it.
    15
  • noob2222
    as long as they make this database accessable to the public. Id hate to buy a phone off ebay with no way to check the # only to find out later its labeled as stolen.

    chances are thats where a lot of stolen phones are getting sold.
    10
  • Other Comments
  • ksampanna
    I can't believe it took them so long. This should've been right since cellphones became mainstream
    23
  • ttg_Avenged
    Good. Remember that one guy who stole a iPhone and uploaded his pics to facebook? Rofl, what a dumb little...

    However, thieves would just sell the phone, so this is nice to stop them.
    5
  • Johmama
    This is actually a really good idea. I've never been victim of cell-phone theft so this doesn't affect me right now, but it's great that they want to do this so I"m not a victim in the future.

    Plus, I gain a little faith in "the system" back every time I see big companies willing to work together, even IF it's for a common benefit. It happens once in a blue moon...
    7