New Bill Would Make It Illegal to Circumvent Phone Registry | Tech NEWS

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New York Senator Charles Schumer today proposed new legislation that would make it illegal to tamper with cell phones in such a way that they could bypass the new stolen phone registry. Last month, the nation’s top four wireless network operators agreed to work with the Federal Communications Commission to build and maintain a database of stolen cell phones IDs. The database would be used by the network operators to deny voice and data services to stolen devices registered on the list. The impetus behind the drive to create the database is to make it difficult to use stolen phones, thereby reducing the resale value of stolen phones, and ultimately curbing the theft of mobile devices. Senator Schumer’s proposal builds on the idea of the database, and would make it against the law to tamper with the unique identification number of a cell phone in order to avoid the registry of stolen devices. “As part of the effort to shut down the black market for stolen iPhones, we must make it abundantly clear to would-be thieves, if you try to alter a stolen cell phone to get around the ban, you will face severe consequences,” said Schumer. The CTIA Wireless Association applauded the proposal. “We are pleased to support Senator Schumer’s legislation and believe it will be an important tool in the effort to combat the theft of wireless devices. We hope Congress moves quickly to pass this important bill.”

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