With the new iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus finally on the market people will start getting their used iPhones ready to sell across the internet. From Craigslist, eBay, Swappa and Bookoo you’re going to probably find listing after listing. The tricky part is knowing if these used iPhones are legit or possibly stolen.
Activation Lock was an Apple feature first brought into iOS7 that would lock down a users phone if it was lost or stolen. The user would be the only one who could unlock the phone using their Apple credentials. But hackers figured out a way to take stolen iPhones and manipulate the software into using an alternative iCloud server and freeing the phone. Now Apple is offering a new service called “Check Activation Lock Status“.
Apple’s new online tool could help prospective buyers determine if the device was stolen or lost even if it was unlocked with unofficial tools, because the IMEI/Serial Number check is done against Apple’s real Activation Lock database.
This is most certainly going to be a thorn in the side of iDevice thieves selling their dirty goods. The only real issue is, will buyers take the time to actually use this tool and check on those goods. What do you think of Apple’s new tool? Will you use it? Let us know in the comments below or on social media.
Swappa has given us a statement:
Swappa already does several ESN-related checks for each device listed on the site, including IMEI checks with the official IMEI database (global whitelist / blacklist). These checks reveal most potential problems related to ESN / IMEI numbers for a phone.
With Apple releasing this new tool we will certainly evaluate it to see how we can use it to improve our listing review and approval process.