If you've accidentally lost your mobile phone or worse, it got stolen, and you didn't have a chance to get it back, don't fret.
In this guide, you will get to block your lost or stolen phone using its IMEI. Or else, the thief can't use or sell it. Take note that this guide is for phones lost in the Philippines only.
What is IMEI?
The IMEI stands for International Mobile Equipment Identity. It is usually composed of 15 decimal digits (for IMEI) or 16 decimal digits (for IMEI/SV) that include information on the origin, model, and the device's serial number. Every phone has a unique IMEI number that enables service providers to identify it. It is typically printed on the battery compartment of older phones, while newer smartphones, either Android or Apple, have it printed on the box.
How to Find My Phone's IMEI?
The IMEI number can be found on the box or other documentation that came with your phone (i.e., receipt).
IMEI can also be displayed on-screen on most phones by dialing *#06# (USSD code). Additionally, dual SIM cards will display two IMEI numbers on the screen, one for each of the two GSM modules contained within. Block both IMEIs on the form.
WHERE TO BUY A SIM CARD IN THE PHILIPPINES
Here are the top mobile networks (where you can purchase and get a SIM card) in the Philippines:
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If the two methods mentioned did not work, check out other ways below to retrieve your phone's IMEI.
For Android users: Retrieve your IMEI inside your Google account
If you own an Android device and have logged into Google Play, you can get your phone's IMEI by following these simple steps:
1. Log in to your Google account on your browser (Chrome/Opera/Firefox).
2. Go to https://www.google.com/android/find.
3. Find the device missing (if you have multiple devices), then click the "i" button beside the phone. This will display the IMEI number and other information.
For iOS users: Find your iPhone IMEI using iTunes
If you've ever synced your iPhone with iTunes, you should be able to view the device's data, including the IMEI, in the iTunes settings. See the procedure below:
1. If you're using Mac, go to the iTunes > Preferences tab. If you're on the PC version of iTunes, go to the Edit > Preferences tab.
2. Now, click on the devices button. Then, go to the Summary tab.
3. Double-click your mobile phone number. Your IMEI should be visible.
What is IMEI Blocking?
Since mobile networks can identify phones connected to them via IMEI, they can be requested to blacklist or deny service to a specific device. It will be implemented by the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC), the government agency that oversees network operators in the Philippines. If the NTC approves your request, your phone's access to all networks in the country will be disabled, effectively rendering it useless.
Does IMEI Blocking Really Work?
Yes, it should work in this case. However, there are some limitations, such as the following:
If your device is removed from the country, the NTC loses jurisdiction over foreign mobile operators.
If the thief is skilled enough, he may be able to change the IMEI of your phone. This is not simple and requires technical expertise or the ability to pay for such services.
Nonetheless, opting for IMEI blocking is still good.
How to Make a Request to NTC?
The Philippine government, through FOI Philippines, has laid out simple steps to block the IMEI of your lost or stolen phone.
The box of the mobile phone indicating the (IMEI) or Official Receipt
Two (2) valid IDs (at least one government-issued ID). Example: passport, driver's license, postal ID, NBI clearance, birth certificate
1. Go to the NTC Regional Office. To check the location/address of the nearest one in your area, go to ntc.gov.ph and click the "Regional Office" in the website's menu.
2. Present the requirements to the employee, and you'll be asked to fill in their forms.
3. Wait for the process to finish.
ATTRACTIONS TO SEE IN MANILA
For Mail, Fax, and E-mail
Duly accomplished and notarized form (Affidavit of Ownership and Loss with Undertaking), available at NTC Website (ntc.gov.ph/downloadable-forms-2)
Scanned copy of the mobile phone's packaging box (barcode/sticker) indicating the (IMEI) or a copy of the Official Receipt with the IMEI number
Scanned copy of two (2) valid IDs (at least one government-issued ID)
1. Send all the required documents to firstname.lastname@example.org.
2. Now, wait for their email regarding the IMEI blocking status. Check your inbox or spam folder regularly. Usually, it will take about 4 days for them to reply.
ACTIVITIES AND TOURS IN MANILA
Important details to prepare:
Besides IMEI and your lost phone's SIM number, here are the other essential details you need to prepare for filling in the Affidavit of Ownership and Loss with Undertaking.
- Full Name
- Mobile Number (to contact) / Telephone Number / Office Telephone Number
- Phone Model
- For Valid ID
- Any government-issued ID or Passport
- School ID (For students)
- Birth Certificate or NBI Clearance (for cases when ID is not available)
- Proof of Ownership (any of the following):
- Copy of the Official Receipt of the mobile phone
- Box of the mobile phone with IMEI
- Additional information:
- How the phone got lost: Lost/Misplaced or Stolen (Theft/Robbery/Hold-up)
- Place of Incident
- Period of the day: Daytime or Nighttime
- TIN No.
NTC - Consumer Welfare and Protection Division Contact Numbers
How to replace a lost SIM card?
For Globe and TM
To have your Globe/TM SIM card replaced, you can go to the nearest Globe store. Make sure to bring a Duly Authorized Affidavit of Loss and a valid ID.
Additional information for Globe Postpaid subscribers
Globe offers postpaid subscribers a complete cellphone protection program called Gadget Care. In case of theft or robbery, postpaid customers subscribed to Gadget Care can replace their devices without hassle.
For Smart, TNT, and Sun Cellular
To have your SIM card replaced for free, you may visit your nearest Smart Store. Just bring with you the following:
- Duly Authorized Affidavit of Loss
- 1 Primary Valid Proof of Identification or 2 Secondary IDs
- Proof of Ownership (SIM Bed, Official Receipt with Mobile Identification, PUK Slip, Successful Login to My Smart Web/MyPLDT Smart App/Giga Life App)
If your phone with a Smart/TNT/Sun SIM card was lost, Smart offers a toll-free customer service hotline for you to report it and replace your SIM card.
For Postpaid subscribers, you can call *888 via cellphone or (02) 8888-1111 via landline to report the loss of your cellphone. After Smart receives the notification of the lost phone, all outgoing calls will be immediately blocked. Additionally, you may request that incoming calls be blocked. If you want to disconnect your line, you need to submit to Smart an affidavit of loss or a police report if stolen and a signed Letter of Undertaking (LOU) within seven (7) days from the report of loss.
For Prepaid subscribers, you can call *888 via cellphone or (02) 8888-1111 via landline to report the loss of your mobile phone. To replace your SIM card, you may visit a Smart Store. The requirements are a Duly Authorized Affidavit of Loss, 1 Valid Proof of Identification, and Proof of Ownership (SIM Beds, PUK Slips, Personalized Smart Money Card).
According to DITO, they cannot replace a DITO SIM Card if it becomes lost or damaged.
According to GOMO, a GOMO SIM card is non-replaceable in the event of loss or theft.
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