Cellphone ‘blacklist’ takes effect in Canada

The Wattson app allows users to track usage via their smartphone. Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

TORONTO – A so-called “blacklist” for phones that are reported as stolen or lost took effect on Monday, preventing those devices from being activated in Canada by someone else.

When consumers tell their mobile carrier that their phone has been stolen or lost its unique IMEI (International Mobile Equipment Identity) number will be added to the database.

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Those phones won’t be able to connect to the networks of Canadian service providers that are participating in the program.

The database does not include phones that were reported as stolen or lost before Monday.

Consumers can also use a search tool at the website to check that they’re not buying stolen property before completing a purchase of a used phone.

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