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a cell phone question

Discussion in 'Electronic Repair' started by RB, Mar 7, 2005.

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  1. RB

    RB Guest

    Got a cell phone service/security question.

    I lost my cell phone Sat. Sun, I suspended the service and reported the
    loss. The cs rep I talked to said no activity had taken place through my
    number during the window from when I lost the phone 'til when I reported it.

    I will eventually get a replacement cell phone, and plan on reusing my old

    The question I have (this is where it gets dicey; I've asked this of the
    cell service cs rep already. His reponse was not meaningful. We talked in
    circles. I don' think he ever really understood what I was asking) is:

    a. Once I get my replacement cell phone, and....

    b. Have service under my old # reactivated.....

    If someone comes into posession of my old phone, could he/she also use my
    account when I'm also using it with my new phone?

    It seems to me that there would have to be some unique characteristic of all
    cell phones that enable the terminal eqpt to distinguish between them to
    prevent such a thing. The cs reps I've talked to can't tell me this is the
    case. They just keep repeating the mantra : with your new phone, you're
    the only one who can use the account.

    I don't get a warm fuzzy feeling about the capability of my cell service to
    prevent someone out in the wild who recovers my lost phone from using it,
    too, once I activate the same phone #.

    Would appreciate words of wisdom on this concern.
  2. Not if the phone has been disabled. Each phone has a unique serial
    number ("ESN") and the ESN is verified for each inbound and outbound
  3. Bob Shuman

    Bob Shuman Guest

    Each cell phone has a unique Electronic Serial Number (ESN) that is
    checked/validated whenever a call is made. If the service provider has
    indeed disabled your old phone, then the only calls allowed by it will be to
    emergency services or the service provider (assuming these features are
    enabled as they usually are in most applications).

    In the event that the phone is found and returned, you would then be able to
    have it re-enabled or have it programmed for a new service number.

  4. Ken Weitzel

    Ken Weitzel Guest

    Hi RB...

    Set your fears aside; there's zero possibility of it being
    used. :)

    However, having said that I respectfully suggest that
    you wait a week or two before replacing it if you can.
    Thinking is that if it hasn't been mis-treated already,
    then it's almost a certainty that it wasn't stolen, but
    rather just misplaced.

    In which case, the odds are pretty good that you may get
    it back. Much better than buying a new one, even if you
    do offer a token reward to the finder.

    Just my two cents.

  5. RB

    RB Guest

    Thanks very much for the assurances that I'll be relatively safe vis-a-vis
    misuse of my previous cell phone. Good to know about the ESNs.

    Whoever said it's probably just misplaced must know me rather well. I
    never lose stuff----I just leave it where I can't find it again anytime

    I suspect it'll turn up somewhere around my digs, and then I'll have two
    cell phones. One can be a paperweight unless/until the one in use quits
    working or, in turn, gets "lost"

    Oh yes, I did in fact walk around with our household cordless phone and
    dutifully try calling my cell # and listening to see if I could hear a
    ringing, and find it that way. No such luck, though.
  6. Bob Horvath

    Bob Horvath Guest

    On Mon, 7 Mar 2005 12:21:32 -0600, Bob Horvath wrote:

    I laid mine on the car seat one time, and as I took off, it skid back
    and underneath the seat. I was at my wits end trying to think what
    happened to it. It was exasperating for a while.
  7. JR North

    JR North Guest

    Over the years, I have 'lost' my cell phones 4 times. Each time, I tore
    my digs apart looking for it, to no avail. Got a new phone, and moved
    on. 2-3-6 months later, the missing phone turns up. I now have a
    fascinating collection of 4 progressively smaller cell phones. None were
    actually lost, just not immediately found.
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