Cell Phones

Buying phones on Kijiji - Blacklisted

  • Last Updated:
  • Aug 5th, 2018 2:57 pm
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Nov 28, 2013
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Oakville
Sorry to hear that you got scammed. But as has been said over and over on these boards, no matter what you do to try to protect yourself, there's nothing you can do to guarantee you don't get a phone that ends up on the blacklist. ESPECIALLY when it comes to new models of phones. You can sell it to an international market that doesn't look at the blacklist. But then you have to deal with selling to international buyers, and you have to look out for scammers who will try to buy it from you, then claim that you mailed them a brick, etc. Or you could sell it to a local phone repairer for parts. Or you can use it as a very expensive iPod on wifi only. And yeah, carriers aren't going to let you just trade in a blacklisted phone, that's silly. As far as they're concerned, you're in possession of stolen goods.

Why are scammers able to get away with it? Simple - the blacklist isn't there to protect people from having their phones stolen. Period. It's there to make the third party marketplace crappier for buyers, to force them to buy new from carriers. There's three classes of sellers on Kijiji that result in blacklisted phones:

1 - Those who actually steal a phone (or find somebody's lost phone) and sell it on Kijiji.
2 - Those who buy a phone as an upgrade on their current plan. Get insurance for it. Sell it, report it as stolen, get a new phone. Profit.
3 - Organized crime rings that buy phones using stolen identities, sell them, and never pay the bill.

TPS is lying to you when they say they *can't* prosecute people for selling things on Kijiji - they very much can, as all of the above 3 scenarios are committing crimes. They just WON'T, pretty much because they can't be bothered. For scenarios 1 and 2, that's petty small time BS that they have very little interest in spending much manpower on (much of the time, they *do* have better uses of their time). For #3, you'd think they'd want to work on cracking down on those organized crime rings... But it's hard to tell the difference between scenarios 1 and 2, and scenario 3. At least, not without doing a LITTLE bit of leg work, and they have no interest in doing ANY leg work in these cases. It sucks, but them's the breaks. The blacklist is a deeply, DEEPLY flawed system that (surprise, surprise!) only really benefits the carriers, in the end. It doesn't reduce phone theft, particularly, the primary thing it does is that it disincentivizes people from buying used phones.
Lucky Koodo $40/6GB recipient
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Jan 4, 2017
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The only way out I guess is overseas (I mean not in NA). They only blacklisted in US/CA (not even Mexico)
you can sell this phone to overseas. Because at that point, you wouldn't lose too much.

kijiji it is all about luck. and this time, you get bad luck.
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Apr 18, 2008
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I wonder ... in such cases, why don't buyer make up a "receipt" to record the sale, with both buyer and seller personal info (name, address, verified by showing a driver's license etc.) and a statement like "I am the legal owner of this phone, I am selling it to buyer for $xxx, it is not blacklisted, but there is no warranty" signed by the seller.

If you are a legit seller, would you object to that? (Buyer can do the work of making the "receipt".) I know there is "privacy" but buyer can also provide same personal info to seller for mutual protection and establishing mutual trust. Think buying a used car, buyer and seller have to exchange some personal info too.

One can buy used phones from businesses that guarantee no blacklist (e.g. GetOrchard for iPhones). You pay more, and the business take the risk. Of course when such businesses buy used phones from individual sellers, they would demand personal info from sellers. So why won't legit sellers exchange personal info with legit buyers when doing private sale? How else can we fight back against the "deeply flawed blacklist system that only benefits the carriers"?
Amerifriend threads need to include instructions on how to acquire an amerifriend. :confused:
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ssiu wrote:
Apr 5th, 2017 3:58 pm
I wonder ... in such cases, why don't buyer make up a "receipt" to record the sale, with both buyer and seller personal info (name, address, verified by showing a driver's license etc.) and a statement like "I am the legal owner of this phone, I am selling it to buyer for $xxx, it is not blacklisted, but there is no warranty" signed by the seller.

If you are a legit seller, would you object to that? (Buyer can do the work of making the "receipt".) I know there is "privacy" but buyer can also provide same personal info to seller for mutual protection and establishing mutual trust. Think buying a used car, buyer and seller have to exchange some personal info too.
Many legit sellers won't give away their personal information to random internet buyers, for fear of identity theft. I personally wouldn't trust a Kijiji buyer any more than I would trust a Kijiji seller, which is why I almost never meet buyers at my home, instead I always meet at a separate, public location. Too many crazies on the internet, I don't want strangers knowing where I live.
Lucky Koodo $40/6GB recipient
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Aug 15, 2012
339 posts
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Mississauga
Your only (good) option now is to sell it overseas, but you'll need to make sure that it isn't blacklisted in the region you plan on selling it in. Most phones blacklisted in North America can be sold in Asia (except for first world countries like Japan and South Korea), where they're usually not blacklisted. Again, you'll have to check.

Or you could sell the phone for parts, which won't net you nearly enough.

Best option? Raise up a stink about it.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-c ... -1.3012709

Get in contact with a news outlet and make your story heard. It may work out in your favour, and Bell may try to suck up to you and unblacklist the phone. Hell, contact the CRTC and any telecom agency you can and see what they can do for you. Find other people who unknowingly bought blacklisted phones and create a petition. This issue needs more awareness. TPS doesn't care because there's not enough awareness around the issue! If enough people complain to them, they'll have to do something. Don't be passive about it.

Try to get in contact with the seller again. Do you have any personal information or were you given a burner number?

Why is the blacklist still around? Because it lets carriers control the smartphone market under the guise that they're protecting users. In theory, the blacklist is a good thing. It gives people control over their stolen phones. It lets companies have control over goods stolen from them. But it makes selling phones anonymously a huge problem because you don't know if the phone can get blacklisted or not. So now, when you buy a phone, you not only have to worry about hardware defects, software issues, if the phone is fake or not, and the usual concerns related to tech, but also if the phone can get blacklisted or not. It's all so stupid.

This could be fixed if carriers were less ambiguous about the IMEI blacklisting system.

The real issue here is that carriers aren't cracking down on fraud as hard as they should--most phones that get blacklisted are (IMO) fraudulently obtained rather than stolen. People sign up for contracts using false information, or don't pay their bills, or an employee miscounts inventory and keeps a couple of phones for themselves to sell before corporate finds out.

What we really need in Canada is a competitive unlocked smartphone market like India's, China's, or even the U.S.'s. You can't get good phones for less than $300 here. Phones are ridiculously overpriced and marked up when they shouldn't be.
Last edited by sk2003 on Apr 5th, 2017 4:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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sk2003 wrote:
Apr 5th, 2017 4:43 pm
The real issue here is that carriers aren't cracking down on fraud as hard as they should--most phones that get blacklisted are (IMO) fraudulently obtained rather than stolen. People sign up for contracts using false information, or don't pay their bills, or an employee miscounts inventory and keeps a couple of phones for themselves to sell before corporate finds out.
Note: carriers can't blacklist phones for non-payment of bills. They can block it from their own network, but they can't add it to the official blacklist. It's officially only for phones that are stolen, or obtained fraudulently (using fake information, etc).
Lucky Koodo $40/6GB recipient
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wearysky wrote:
Apr 5th, 2017 5:00 pm
Note: carriers can't blacklist phones for non-payment of bills. They can block it from their own network, but they can't add it to the official blacklist. It's officially only for phones that are stolen, or obtained fraudulently (using fake information, etc).
IDK, I've heard of stories where phones were blacklisted for non-payment. I'm surprised that isn't the case. What about phones that aren't paid off at all?
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Sep 23, 2013
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blueflame wrote:
Apr 5th, 2017 1:05 pm
PS- If someone has an idea of what I can do with this phone now let me know. I've heard that I could get some money selling in internationally but haven't looked into too much.
I started a thread on the use of a blacklisted phone for a victim (besides selling overseas)

use-blacklisted-phone-2078157/

Hope that alleviates your hardship
Daniel

Fido $0 3Gb LTE + overage plan until Feb 2019
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sk2003 wrote:
Apr 5th, 2017 5:02 pm
IDK, I've heard of stories where phones were blacklisted for non-payment. I'm surprised that isn't the case. What about phones that aren't paid off at all?
There's a single news story reporting a person that bought a phone that was supposedly blacklisted for non-payment. But everybody misses the update later on in that story about how it was *actually* blacklisted because it was purchased fraudulently. The blacklist is quite specifically *only* for lost or stolen phones.
Lucky Koodo $40/6GB recipient
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MODs should sticky all those to the top. Buyer's greed teaching them expensive lessons.

phone-blacklisted-bought-online-month-ago-2092039/
An earlier version of this article incorrectly described a behavior of crows exposed to crow corpses. Live crows only touch, attack and attempt intercourse with crow corpses, they do not scavenge them. (Actual NYT correction)
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Feb 24, 2007
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I'll say buying a phone from a stranger is a hit and miss. Not neccessary phones from Kijiji or Craigslist are all bad. It's just unfortunate.
Me myself sold 3 phones through Kijiji and buyers are happy with them. They have my phone number and I told them to call me back when in doubt. We first got each other's phone number before we met. Some didn't even check the phone with SIM. Just powered it up checked for scratches and paid. And no. I don't provide receipts.
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Jul 14, 2009
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Just tried my luck on the Bell mobility customer line. Pretty much useless.

There were some questions they couldn't answer for me and this is really concerning.

1. If I bought the phone and it is blacklisted a month later, why did the owner take so long to report it stolen? I doubt it takes a month to get a phone on a blacklist.

2. If I bought the phone legally (last time I checked Kijiji isn't illegal) then why am I the one that is punished? If the original owner actually lost the phone then it is their problem and Bell shouldn't have the ability kill the phone!
Sure, block the SIM card (this phone didn't come with a SIM card in it) so I can't use their plan but why would you brick the phone? This is just nonsense!

3. If I have the phone why is Bell not asking me to bring it to a store to return to the owner? They told me they can see the account that is attached to the IMEI and they have me on the line but they refuse to act as an intermediary between me and the other party who "lost" their phone.

I will take sk2003 advice and I will raise a stink about this.


EDIT: spelling
Last edited by blueflame on Apr 6th, 2017 9:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Newbie
Jan 28, 2017
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You do have another option: return the phone to Apple and pay the out of warranty repair fee to get a replacement iPhone. For the iPhone 7, that would be $409 plus tax. Though perhaps it's overkill, you might want to damage up the phone a bit and then it should be a fairly straight forward exchange at the Apple Store.

Yes, it sucks to be out another $445, but at least then you'll have a functioning iPhone that won't get blacklisted again.
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Jul 14, 2009
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MrBarkers wrote:
Apr 6th, 2017 9:41 pm
You do have another option: return the phone to Apple and pay the out of warranty repair fee to get a replacement iPhone. For the iPhone 7, that would be $409 plus tax. Though perhaps it's overkill, you might want to damage up the phone a bit and then it should be a fairly straight forward exchange at the Apple Store.

Yes, it sucks to be out another $445, but at least then you'll have a functioning iPhone that won't get blacklisted again.
I was wondering if Apple might do this. But wait, they will take a phone and replace it for that price? Or are they just swapping the logic board? (I assume the IMEI would be different on a new logic board)

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