Ok to provide IMEI to potential buyers when selling an iPhone?

rockitdog

macrumors 68020
Original poster
Mar 25, 2013
2,440
785
I'm selling an iPhone 5s and am wondering if it's safe to give out the IMEI to potential buyers or not. I've heard that there are ways people can get your phone blacklisted or blocked if you provide that info, is this true?
 

ionjohn

macrumors 65816
Jun 5, 2013
1,183
9
Canada
I'm selling an iPhone 5s and am wondering if it's safe to give out the IMEI to potential buyers or not. I've heard that there are ways people can get your phone blacklisted or blocked if you provide that info, is this true?
I guess that's true, why would they want it anyway? I sold a 5s $550 and the guy didn't ask for it.
 

rui no onna

macrumors 604
Oct 25, 2013
6,798
3,089
I'm selling an iPhone 5s and am wondering if it's safe to give out the IMEI to potential buyers or not. I've heard that there are ways people can get your phone blacklisted or blocked if you provide that info, is this true?
I suggest selling via Swappa. They have their system for checking IMEI, etc.
 

rockitdog

macrumors 68020
Original poster
Mar 25, 2013
2,440
785
I guess that's true, why would they want it anyway? I sold a 5s $550 and the guy didn't ask for it.

The guy is claiming he doesn't want to drive all the way to see me to find out it's blacklisted but I just don't want to give it out if there's any risk involved at all.
 

rockitdog

macrumors 68020
Original poster
Mar 25, 2013
2,440
785
I suggest selling via Swappa. They have their system for checking IMEI, etc.

I'm aware of swappa but I want to avoid PayPal and shipping if possible. Besides I think I can get more on CL the swappa based on what I'm seeing.
 

Globug

macrumors 6502
Mar 16, 2012
428
71
Brisbane Australia
He can't blacklist it but i believe he can ping it so that his phone shows your imei number if his phone is blacklisted. Essentially he would steal your IMEI number. I'm probably explaining it wrong but i wouldn't give it out.
 

hockeyman94

macrumors regular
Nov 26, 2012
118
4
California
He can't blacklist it but i believe he can ping it so that his phone shows your imei number if his phone is blacklisted. Essentially he would steal your IMEI number. I'm probably explaining it wrong but i wouldn't give it out.
No he is just checking to see if its blacklisted or not nothing else.
 

C DM

macrumors Sandy Bridge
Oct 17, 2011
47,468
15,999
I can tell you i want to check for blacklisting too and then just take the IMEI number. Run a check online yourself and just send him that info. Just black out the IMEI number.
How can that be stolen? Are we talking about cloning essentially? While possible it's against the law and requires a fair bit more than vast majority of people would really deal with or have access to.
 

2macarena

macrumors newbie
Apr 21, 2011
25
4
I think it should be a usual practice to disclose the IMEI or send by request in your description details for the iPhone on eBay. So potential buyers can check and verify that it is locked/unlocked and to which carrier. It is not fair when someone buy a cheap phone and than discovers that it is not unlockable.
 
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roczero

macrumors newbie
Mar 26, 2016
6
1
I think it should be a usual practice to disclose the IMEI or send by request in your description details for the iPhone on eBay. So potential buyers can check and verify that it is locked/unlocked and to which carrier. It is not fair when someone buy a cheap phone and than discovers that it is not unlockable.
Just came across this situation selling a phone. While I agree the buyer should have the right to check, I still feel uncomfortable giving it out. I just use a website called imeiexchange dot com and they essentially hide the IMEI # while still verifying if the phone is blacklisted or compatible with the network for the buyer. Works great
 

C DM

macrumors Sandy Bridge
Oct 17, 2011
47,468
15,999
Just came across this situation selling a phone. While I agree the buyer should have the right to check, I still feel uncomfortable giving it out. I just use a website called imeiexchange dot com and they essentially hide the IMEI # while still verifying if the phone is blacklisted or compatible with the network for the buyer. Works great
If the IMEI is hidden how does that prove that that's the phone in question and not some other (perhaps even random) device?
 

zone23

macrumors 68000
May 10, 2012
1,965
739
I've sold a number of phones and never had an issue giving out the IMEI. I have also asked for a IMEI a number of times and no one has ever had an issue giving it too me. If you want to sell the phone give it to him.
 

hockeyman94

macrumors regular
Nov 26, 2012
118
4
California
He can't blacklist it but i believe he can ping it so that his phone shows your imei number if his phone is blacklisted. Essentially he would steal your IMEI number. I'm probably explaining it wrong but i wouldn't give it out.
There is no way he would steal your IMEI number. Back when there was flip phones you could easily use another rewrite an IMEI number but you can't anymore and is very illegal. Give him the IMEI number he just wants to make sure the phone is not blacklisted.
 

Fancuku

macrumors 65816
Oct 8, 2015
1,009
2,540
PA, USA
Please explain how that is possible since its basically in the firmware of the phone.
Yeah, I don't see how it's possible. Same with the serial number of Macs. Some sellers refuse to give out the serial number because they are afraid that something might happen. All you can do with it is check the warranty status on Apple's website.
 

se1000

macrumors 6502
Sep 24, 2014
417
402
LA, CA
I see this as the same as sharing a VIN when selling a car. Swappa is easiest, they do the legwork for the buyer and seller, Ebay is next up, if a buyer has a good rating and/or has completed the purchase, my opinion is that sharing the IMEI is fair. Craigslist is tougher since it's difficult to know if someone is serious or not.

Has anyone ever had an issue with sharing an IMEI and had it cloned or blacklisted?
 

roczero

macrumors newbie
Mar 26, 2016
6
1
If the IMEI is hidden how does that prove that that's the phone in question and not some other (perhaps even random) device?
They just give you a reference number that is linked to the IMEI and the buyer will use the reference number to check. The results will also show what the phone brand and model is, so you could verify that to make sure it's the right phone.