The Indian Government is taking a big step to block black-marketing, fake IMEI numbers and tampering of mobile phone devices by initiating registration of IMEI numbers with the Centre. The Department of Telecom, in a gazette notification, has issued new guidelines that need to be followed by all mobile phone manufacturers from January 1, 2023.
“The manufacturer shall register the international mobile equipment identity number of every mobile phone manufactured in India with the Indian Counterfeited Device Restriction portal (https://icdr.ceir.gov.in) of the Government of India in the Department of Telecommunications before the first sale of the mobile phone,” the DoT notification states.
Furthermore, the government has also made it necessary to register the IMEI number of imported mobile phones with the Indian Counterfeited Device Restriction portal of the Government of India in the Department of Telecommunications before importing it to the country, be it for any reason including but not limited to testing, research, sale, etc.
The move by the government aims to limit the activity of mobile phone tampering, including IMEI cloning, black marketing and more. Reports state that in June 2020, the Meerut Police found more than 13,000 Vivo phones with the same IMEI number. Other similar incidents have come to light as well. The new guidelines compulsorily require all phones manufactured in the country to have a unique IMEI number that can also be tracked digitally. This will also enable users to track down their devices in case of theft.
For those unaware, an IMEI number stands for International Mobile Equipment Identity. It is a unique number to identify GSM, WCDMA, and iDEN mobile phones, as well as satellite phones. Using this number, tracking the phone in cases of theft becomes easier. Further, devices that support Single SIM have one IMEI, while those with dual SIM have two IMEIs. You can check your phone’s IMEI by dialling *#06# via your phone’s dialer. Any device that doesn’t have an IMEI is considered fake.