AT&T’s Stolen Phone Blocking Creates Headaches

AT&T’s new “no stolen phones on our network” policy is really creating havoc for end users everywhere. Not so much in the aspect of Ma Bell’s postpaid users, but in the form of those that purchase handsets via third parties and used devices off websites like Craigslist.

We’ve been bombarded with unhappy user comments and emails about how their device was blocked from Red Pocket Mobile, H2O Wireless and GoPhone service. We contacted Red Pocket, AT&T and H2O for comments about the new policies and were met with the following answers.

Red Pocket Mobile assured us that they have no control over what handsets AT&T approves for activation and couldn’t comment on how a handset can be placed back on the usable list. They simply stated that the user must contact the issuing carrier to have the device reinstated. H2O stated virtually the same comments, adding that purchasing new devices or using your own previous devices are the safest way to ensure that your phone is not stolen.

AT&T was even more direct with their answers. An AT&T representative stated that their network will no longer allow any phone that has had an insurance claim made against it, been reported to any carrier as stolen or any device that may cause detrimental harm to the AT&T network.

As far as the fix for getting your blocked handset working again, you will need to contact AT&T directly with the IMEI number for your phone. They will then tell you who reported the device and who to call to have the device cleared. It usually takes 12-24 hours for the device to clear the system.

If you are one of the affected, bear with them as they work the links out of the system and be cautious where you get your next handset.

Posted from WordPress for Windows Phone from


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