Unfortunately, many people find out that they have a blacklisted iPhone when they want to activate it, but of course, only after the purchase has been done.
Whether you bought your iPhone from an Apple store, a retailer, or someone from an online market, you would expect to start using it immediately. The last thing you could imagine is that your used iPhone can come with some hidden issues.
As you will soon discover, the first thing you always want in order to use a blacklisted iPhone is to remove it from the blacklist. But eventually, the most important part at this stage is to find out the whole history behind this iPhone and what solutions are available at the moment.
Updated On May 05, 2020
What does it mean when an iPhone is blacklisted?
Most people do not fully understand how the blacklist works. The truth is, it can affect your iPhone at any time, even if it was working normally in the first place.
A blacklisted iPhone is restricted from making & receiving calls as well as sending & receiving text messages. Of course, the same goes for the data plan.
This restriction applies not only to the network that imposed it but also on a national level.
And this is exactly what creates confusion… A lot of confusion!
Why do iPhones get blacklisted?
There are several reasons.
Each one requires a different approach depending on how you want to use the blacklisted iPhone.
- If you lose your iPhone (or gets stolen) and report this incident to your carrier the iPhone will be flagged as
lost or stolen.
- If you lost your iPhone which is currently insured. You can place an insurance claim and get a replacement. Once you get the replacement, the lost iPhone’s IMEI will become blacklisted and get flagged as
- Some iPhones also end up blacklisted if used for fraudulent activities. These cases will be flagged as
- Not only networks can blacklist an iPhone, but also Apple. This will happen when an iPhone gets stolen directly from a store, a warehouse, or during transfer. In this case, Apple will immediately place the device under
Chimaera Device Policy.
- You bought the iPhone from a mobile network and
you have unpaid contract bills or a pending device installment plan. Depending on the terms, the Carrier may block your iPhone at any given time for outstanding financial balances.
In this case, your iPhone will be considered as blocked or barred which is also similar to blacklisted.
How the blacklisted iPhone got into your hands
When you buy a used iPhone online or from a local retailer, it is possible that you can end up with a blacklisted iPhone because of the reasons above.
You might be able to use the iPhone for a while, only to see the infamous “no service” icon instead of your network’s signal.
While most cases of blacklisted iPhones are used purchases, even original owners can still experience this issue, most of the time due to unpaid bills.
Can you get rid of this problematic device?
Most likely, the first thing you did when you found out that your iPhone was blacklisted was to contact the seller. However, you might not have been successful in getting a refund or get a replacement with a working iPhone instead.
Unfortunately, most of the time, you are not dealing with the real owner but with a retailer who in turn was also deceived by the one who sold him this used iPhone.
Sadly, these sellers will never work with you to help solve the problem.
In some instances, the seller is the iPhone owner but unfortunately, the purpose from the beginning was to deceive you… After selling you the iPhone, he will then report it to the carrier as stolen. This is done so the owner can place an insurance claim that gets him a replacement iPhone as well as your money.
If you’re not able to communicate with the seller to get a working iPhone or your money back, let’s discuss all available options you have left.
Is there a way to use a Blacklisted iPhone?
No network is going to help you with that even when you have proof of purchase. So our options are limited to third parties services that are not free, have requirements, and different outcomes.
You will come across a lot of information about the suggested solutions. And this is exactly where the great confusion is caused.
There are two third party services for blacklisted iPhones
At the moment we are sure that the iPhone is blacklisted but we have forgotten to take into account the state of the SIM lock.
Summarizing in three sentences, the situation including the SIM lock is as follows:
- Blacklisted and at the same time SIM Locked iPhones can’t be used anywhere in the world.
- Unblacklisted and at the same time SIM Locked iPhones can be used only with the Carrier that is locking them.
- Blacklisted but at the same time SIM Unlocked iPhones can be used abroad, and the blacklist issue only remains in effect in the country where the iPhone became blacklisted.
Unlocking a blacklisted iPhone is completely different from removing it from the blacklist. We are talking about two completely different services with different results: IMEI Unblacklist and Premium IMEI Unlock.
These services are used to remove the blacklist status so that the iPhone
- can be used again with the network that SIM locks it or
- all networks around the world in case it is already SIM unlocked.
While this is true, currently more and more blacklist databases are shared across borders. A good example is the USA, Canada, Mexico, Brazil & Puerto Rico. According to many visitors, Colombia was also added to this group recently.
However, if you want to use a blacklisted iPhone outside the country facing the problem, then you do not need to remove it from the blacklist but unlock the SIM Lock. You can read more on How to Unblacklist your Phone.
Premium IMEI Unlock
IMEI Unlock in general, is used to remove the SIM Lock. When an iPhone is blacklisted we call it Premium IMEI Unlock (Check How to Unlock a Blacklisted iPhone).
As long as the iPhone remains blacklisted, you will be able to activate it and use it anywhere in the world except for one country (or more).
Both services, Unblacklist and Premium Unlock, have the same conditions.
- Each one is made for a specific network
- Each is suitable for a specific blacklisting reason.
For example, you may find a service when it is stolen but not in the case of fraud or vice versa.
- Sometimes they are not available for all iPhone models
- There are further restrictions on contract, Apple warranty and IMEI number replacement status.
- Although the results are permanent,
- Τhe services remain active for a limited time. Nobody knows when a service will be reactivated. It can take days, weeks or even months.
- Each company provides services with a different success rate.
Unfortunately, although everyone says 100%, the real rate ranges between
0% (offline periods) and 100% (during the first period of its reactivation)
- Even when they are inactive, providers give you the option to purchase them with a pre-order form without notifying you, meaning you think you have already paid for the whole process when you have only paid a small portion of it (usually $20 to $30).
- Their final price varies greatly from provider to provider and ranges between $50 and $250
- There is no refund if you have pre-ordered or if your device does not meet even one of the conditions I mentioned above.
iPhone Blacklist Check: The best way to use a blacklisted iPhone again
Unless you are 100% confident about the overall IMEI status of an iPhone and have previous experience in unlocking or unblacklisting, it is best to leave the entire process to the experts.
You have already experienced the frustration of buying an iPhone in the blacklist. Please don’t make things worse by getting a non-existing service or failing to activate the iPhone by choosing the wrong service.
The worst is, your hard-earned money will not be refunded just because you got the wrong service or a tiny piece of information was incorrect.
An iPhone Blacklist Check will figure out:
- The Carrier
- The reason for the blacklist
- The SIM Lock Status
- If the iPhone is eligible for an unlock or an unblacklist service
- Which services are available at the moment
- What service you need
- Success chances
- How much it will cost you
- You are not getting a pre-order but the actual service
- You will get your money back if anything goes wrong
And in addition to all this, you will have constant support 24/7 from a whole team of iPhone unlocking experts, ready to answer any of your questions but especially to guide you safely in the next steps.
Therefore, all roads lead to starting out with an IMEI Eligibility Check to find out all underlying issues about your iPhone and once you know everything, you will be equipped to get the right service and finally activate your blacklisted iPhone.