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Thread: Buy Phone, Verify ESN, Activate Phone, Bricked.

  1. #1
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    Angry Buy Phone, Verify ESN, Activate Phone, Bricked.

    I have had no love with Verizon Customer Support and Managers and wanted to get the forums take on my issue.

    I bought a phone, 3rd party, verified the ESN and activated successfully.
    Since then I have been using it for 2 years. I recently upgraded and was planning to give this phone to my wife.

    When I tried to activate it on her account, I was informed to call customer server from which they told me it was reported stolen, but there was no notes on my account. With further research they found out that the previous owner reported it lost/stolen, 10 days after I activated it. They initially charged him for not returning a phone, but later refunded him as their 'investigations' determined that it was 'lost' en route and they could not locate the phone. Apparently this was a device that was supposed to be sent back because he got a replacement device.

    Verizon told me there is nothing they can do because it was already flagged.

    Verizon has access to every device and ESN.
    I verified and activated 10 days before he reported it stolen.
    Verizon never notified me at any point, until I tried to reactivate the phone.
    And because it is 2 years later, I have no longer have me emails and txts from the guy who sold it to me. There is no way for me to go after him or even verify that the seller was the original owner with Verizon.

    And to top it off, the Verizon Manager said that there is a LOOP-HOLE in their SOP's. Anyone can sell a good device. Wait a few days and report it stolen.

    I have been with Verizon since 2007 and they would not do anything for me at all. So now I will be leaving to another carrier.

  2. #2
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    You're leaving Verizon because some guy on Craigslist committed fraud?

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    Leaving them because their system doesn't protect them against shady sellers despite popular belief that once the ESN is on your account you're in the clear. Same thing is happening with T-Mobile. It doesn't truly matter when it comes to the details and who committed the fraud but if they feel wronged, usually they leave.
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  4. #4
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    And if Verizon, upon being told that the phone was lost/stolen and immediately blacklisted the phone and disabled it from the OP's account two years ago, the OP would have gotten mad at them as well for not allowing him to use the phone.

  5. #5
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    If I was notified, I would have been able to go after the guy who sold me the phone, verizon however doesn't mind to take my monthly bill for the next 2 years on a blacklisted phone, eventhough it has been activated free and clear on my end.

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    Quote Originally Posted by stevebor1 View Post
    If I was notified, I would have been able to go after the guy who sold me the phone, verizon however doesn't mind to take my monthly bill for the next 2 years on a blacklisted phone, eventhough it has been activated free and clear on my end.
    I would leave, too. And file a complaint with the FCC, BBB, and on Consumerist. Call your local newspaper's "Ms. Fix It" column (or equivalent) and tell her your story. The CDMA Blacklist is the longest running joke in cellular history, and it needs to be stopped immediately. Somehow, GSM carriers manage to get along fine without blacklisting phones. You know why? It's called the ETF. That's what protects the carrier's investment in the phone.

    If you fail to pay the ETF, it goes on your credit report as an unpaid obligation, you can even be sued to pay it. This is their insurance against fraud. Just as simlocks are completely anti-consumer and should be illegal, this form of anti-consumer corporate diarrhea only serves to screw over people who unknowingly buy a phone from a scammer, but the scammer gets away scot-free.

    I'd continue, after contacting the aforementioned agencies to file complaints, by calling my local environazi group and tell them how CDMA carriers are being wasteful by ensuring more heavy metals and toxins from the phones end up in landfills and how they are rendering useless perfectly working devices in order to pad their bottom line even though we have spent unknown amounts of carbon emissions from chinese plants into the air (even though I know the carbon crap is all a bunch of liberal-anti-human propaganda, it'll rile the greenies up) and see how much of a general crapstorm you can start.

    They might get a little more flexible with you, then. People should start fighting back. Yes, I know somebody screwed Verizon out of a little money. I know that I'm not a RealMurrican(TM) if I don't put corporate profit above all else, but the CDMA blacklist is a complete screw-job and never hurts anyone except unwitting participants and serves to drive down the resale value of everyone else's phones since people are unwilling to pay as much knowing they could always be out their money at any given time.

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    Quote Originally Posted by clonehappy View Post
    I know that I'm not a RealMurrican(TM) if I don't put corporate profit above all else, but the CDMA blacklist is a complete screw-job and never hurts anyone except unwitting participants and serves to drive down the resale value of everyone else's phones since people are unwilling to pay as much knowing they could always be out their money at any given time.
    There are some posts in the T-Mobile forum where some users have reported that T-Mobile is now blocking some IMEI's on past due accounts so it seems this is no longer just a CDMA carrier tactic. Overall though blacklisting does seem unfair since it's the buyer of the used phone's that gets screwed, not the seller/scammer. Having said all that I can also kind of see how the carriers feel the need to protect themselves by blacklisting phone's. Either way its a lose/lose situation for consumers.

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    Really not their fault. They probably never even looked and saw it was on an account. The seller was the one in the wrong and that person screwed you. You just got lucky for 2 years. I'm sure the system automatically just added it to the stolen list when they never received it back and someone clicked a button. They didn't know you were using it. Even if they did it wasn't their problem. They assumed someone had stolen it or whatever. They don't care about a thief or notifying him that the phone wouldn't work in the future. I realize you didn't do anything wrong, just an unfortunate situation. I can see how it could easily happen.

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    Assuming the seller had to return the phone for insurance purposes, wouldn't he have been given a pre-paid shipping label? Didn't Verizon/Asurian track that specific package to determine its fate? Wouldn't the FedEx or UPS tracking system show if and when it was picked up by the carrier and the progress of the shipment? Regardless, how exactly could they conclude that the package was lost in transit?

    In the end, Verizon has no obligation to help the buyer (heck, at least he got 2 years of use). A courtesy credit or replacement phone would be the right thing to do, however. OP....do a Google search for VZW Executive Services and send an email to a company VP. Explain your story clearly, consicely and calmly. Avoid threats and rambling. You might get some resolution this way.

  10. #10
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    I'll bet there are a few threads on here about people that argued up an down with Verizon that they sent a phone back, got a credit for the charge then found the "missing" phone and sold it. There's plenty about insurance phones.

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    I had a similar issue, but in the end, I won. Purchased a DroidX off of Craigslist. Called Verizon and verified the phone was not reported stolen...However, when I went to acitvate it, I was advised the guy I bought it from still had it activated on his account. I waited a day and tried again, same issue. I was able to access his account on his phone and see he had a balance of $177 that was due the day he sold me the phone. Anyway, I called Verizon a couple times telling them each time what the deal was. They then attempted to call the listed person on the account and kept getting vmail. Finally, one of the reps was able to get a someone to answer and as soon as she announced she was with Verizon, they hung up. So Verizon went ahead and deactivated the phone from his account and activated it on mine. I ensured she put notes on his account and mine expaining what happened.

    Fast forward about a year, I briefly switch back to my Blackberry and then back to the DroidX I purchased. No can do, the phone has been flagged stolen. I called Verizon and within minutes of reading my notes they unflagged the phone. She also said they were flagging his account as "fraudulant". Now, I have no idea if she was telling the truth or not, but it made me feel good.

    I said all that to say this. If you get the right person and be nice, they will/can help you.
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    The device esn history can be researched and tied back to he other customer. I am surprised a device hitting the negative list allows the device to function. I'd like to believe someone would research it that far back cause what that guy did to op is downright fraud.
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    No question they can look up whose account it was on but they can't tell the OP that, it's a MASSIVE breach of privacy.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vatothe0 View Post
    No question they can look up whose account it was on but they can't tell the OP that, it's a MASSIVE breach of privacy.
    Seems like scammers and frauds get more privacy than the rest of us.

    Anyway, I'm all for the CDMA blacklist. It means that I'm secure that my expensive $$$ phone is not as useful to a thief as a AT&T phone. However, it should only be used for phones reported lost or stolen. The carrier shouldn't be able to blacklist a phone because the owner skipped out on the ETF, that's wrong. They can and do go after the ETF with the credit bureaus. Its one thing to repossess a car since it is clearly collateral for a loan, but not so cool to "repossess" a phone which was never meant to be collateral to the carrier.

    What T-Mobile is doing is very wrong if they only blacklist phones that they themselves took a loss on and not phones that were lost or stolen.
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    Quote Originally Posted by stevebor1 View Post
    If I was notified, I would have been able to go after the guy who sold me the phone, verizon however doesn't mind to take my monthly bill for the next 2 years on a blacklisted phone, eventhough it has been activated free and clear on my end.
    Phones are only checked at the time of activation. The phone was, apparently, clear back when you activated it, but was not clear when your wife when to activate it.

    Just to add, there are two "black" lists. One for lost/stolen and another for past due account. The phone has to be clear on both. Many times, only the lost/stolen list checked when done manually before an actual activation.

    Verizon does not share info about one customer with other customers. That seems to be what you are most angry about. And that is not going to change. Verizon never told you what this other customer was doing with the phone they bought from Verizon because they can't.

    You should be angry, but only with the person from which you bought this used phone. This person screwed over both Verizon by making a false "lost" phone report, and by selling you a "lost" phone. I hope you remember the seller's name, and take some legal action against them. Good luck if you do.

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