PTA might Start Blocking Chinese Handsets without IMEI

Pakistan Telecommunication Authority may start blocking Chinese handsets that come with no IMEI or with dummy IMEI, told us sources close to authority.

We cannot confirm the timeline as of now, but some preliminary work has been started on analysis of such handsets.

Not all Chinese handsets come without IMEI; rather these Mobile phones without an IMEI are typically low-end handsets from smaller Chinese phone manufacturers who cut costs by skipping the IMEI programming stage.

Handsets without IMEI are a threat to national security as they are reportedly used in illegal activities. A call made from a handset without IMEI makes it impossible to prove who made or received specific phone calls as cellular companies can’t trace the specific handset.

It may be recalled that India recently blocked 25 million handsets that were without IMEI.

Like India, Pakistani cellular companies may also offer re-programming of such Chinese handsets. In common words, through re-programming, IMEI number is embedded in a mobile phone to give it a legal status.

This movement is also supported by handset manufacturers as Chinese handsets are source of headache for mobile phone manufacturers like Nokia, Samsung and others. Sales of branded phones have been impacted significantly after low-cost Chinese handsets penetrated into Pakistani and other developing markets.

Tech reporter with over 10 years of experience, founder of ProPakistani.PK


  • OOH MY GOD IS LEY 2 DAYS SE MERA CHINA KA SET KHARB HO GAYA HAI KHUD SE LIKA ARAHA HAI CONTACT SERVICE CENTER SAMJ NHI ATA K AB KEYA KARO ???

  • but my handset is working f9 and its have no IMEI …..so its mean i have to sell it before its too late….any confirmation from authority Aamir?

  • PTA is unable to block the unregistered SIMS which are currently in use then how PTA can implement this rule. People having unregistered SIMS are still using those. Only inactive and unregistered SIMS have been blocked.

    • Yeh! Its a fact. But i think blocking handsets would be easy, as you just have to make some changes in the system, and make them accept only Registered IMEI’s.

  • It’s good though, but the problem is that only end user will get effected. Because if some one bought a set which gets blocked, he’ll not be compensated for that.
    Although in long run, it’ll discourage sellers from selling such phones, but still at large scale it’ll initially effect consumers.

    I hope, some compensation plan is made for those who’ll be effected by this.

  • I have dual sim chinese set when i query for IMEI i.e. *#06# it gives me 2 IMEI numbers is it correct set

  • We are living in free economy era and liberty to purchase whatever brand we like provided if it is not harmful in use. Though, I am not a Chinese phone user but still feel pity for them who are using it. What objective can be achieved by blocking them? Amir, please shed some light on it. Just look in the local market, you will hardly find any phone which has IMEI number manufactured by (Nokia, Samsung etc,) and still associated with the guy who purchased it. If blocking them is inevitable then authorities must devise a process in which IMEI number should be added in the database along with the buyer information. And with every resale of the devise this data should be updated. I am posting above suggestions considering national security concern.

    Having said, we can achieve nothing but to add another achievement with certainly no profit at all. If authorities execute such action, I think this would be in response to business threat from Chinese phone to other big brands.

    Tell me if I am missing something, would like to learn about if any one has some thing valuable to say.


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