One’s phone these days are no longer just a device to make and receive calls, it has become way more than that. Phones are a medium that connects one to the world and they can do many things which weren’t heard of earlier. From making payments to finding your way, phones can do many things nowadays. This is the reason that losing a phone seems like a nightmare as not only one breaks contact with the world but also at risk of data leak and financial fraud.
To help those whose phone gets missing or stolen, the Department of Telecommunications, Government of India, started the CEIR portal. The Central Equipment Identity Register (CEIR) is a government system to curb the counterfeit mobile phone market. CEIR is now available in all states and Union Territories in India.
History of CEIR
The CEIR was first launched in Dadra and Nagar Haveli, Goa, and Maharashtra in September 2019. The service was later expanded to Delhi in December 2019. According to their database, the remaining states and UTs also received the feature on March 15, 2023. This huge delay in rollout in the remaining parts is mostly due to the Covid-19 pandemic that derailed many other projects as well.
What does CEIR do?
Central Equipment Identity Register allows users to quickly lodge a complaint on a lost electronic gadget with an IMEI number such as a smartphone at your local police station. Using this website, users can block a stolen or lost mobile, unblock a found mobile, and can even use the website to find more details about a secondhand smartphone.
How to use CEIR Website/Application?
To use CEIR, you can go to their website or download the CEIR app for Android or iOS. The platform is free to use, though you will need to submit to keep your phone’s IMEI number handy. The number is found on the box of the smartphone. It is always advisable to save the number in a diary. One can also dial *#06# on your phone to get its IMEI number.
Using CEIR when a phone is stolen/missing
CEIR connects to the IMEI database of all mobile operators. For the system to work well, GOI works with mobile brands and network operators. CEIR blocks or blacklists the phone via the IMEI number and it won’t work even if the thief changes the SIM card.
For CEIR to work, the users will have to submit a request and file an FIR at the nearest police station. Fill out an online form available on the website and app. Some important fields to be filled in include mobile number, device model, IMEI 1 and 2 numbers, and location information (where the phone was lost). The CEIR website also asks for a scanned copy of the FIR.
After you successfully submit the blocking request, the user’s phone is blocked within 24 hours. After it gets blocked, the device cannot be used on any network across India. The GOI says that the IMEI blocking does not prevent the police from tracking the lost/stolen phone. Users can also check the complaint status.
If your device is found, you will have to unblock it. CEIR has an unblock option as well and submits the Request ID plus more details.
Know Your Mobile is a free Android and IOS app that gives details about the status of your phone. It gives details like the status of the IMEI number, mobile manufacturer name, model number, and device type. All you need is the IMEI number and a phone number that can get OTP.
How to unblock a found phone?
If you have recovered your stolen or lost mobile, the same can be unblocked via the CEIR website by entering details like request ID, and mobile number, and by specifying a reason for unblocking. Without unblocking the phone, the device will be disabled and won’t be of any use.
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