Every mobile network dependent device has a unique 15-digit identification number called an IMEI number. By network dependent devices, we refer to mobile phones, USB modems, and mifis. More accurately, an IMEI number is allocated to each wireless radio in a device, so a dual SIM mobile phone has two IMEI numbers. IMEI is an abbreviation of International Mobile Equipment Identity Number. The number identifies each device and can be used to trace it.
How To Find Your Phone’s IMEI Number
Your device’s IMEI number can be found inside the back cover. For mobile phones, you can also enter *#06# and the number will be displayed on the screen.
Changing The IMEI Number Of Your Phone
There are people who keep asking about how to change the IMEI of their mobile phone. The first issue is that it is illegal to do so in many countries. It is easy to see why: it is a unique identifier. As such by default, you shouldn’t be wanting to change it if you are not involved in illegal activities, all other things being equal.
Any Benefits of Changing IMEI Number?
There are no real benefits to changing IMEI number of your phone. It does not provide you more privacy, for example. There are technologies that can identify you even if you alter your phone’s IMEI number.
Also, note that if you change your phone’s IMEI number and it so happens that the number you replaced it with belongs to another phone that is already in use, you will end up with a bricked phone.
One benefit that used to exist was changing the IMEI of an Android smartphone to that of a Blackberry device so as to be able to use Glo Blackberry internet Service on Android. Glo has since discontinued its BlackBerry Internet Service (BIS), so that benefit is gone with the wind.
In the end, changing your IMEI provides no real benefits in terms of privacy or security, poses a risk of killing your phone, and also opens you up to legal issues. You do not want to be caught on the wrong side of the law.
Founder of MobilityArena. Yomi’s journey in mobile started in 2001. Besides obsessing over mobile phones, he also started creating WAP sites (early mobile-friendly websites created with WML). He began writing about phones in 2004 and has been at it since then. He has owned over 200 devices, from Symbian, Palm, PocketPC/Windows Mobile, BlackBerry/BB10, webOS, Windows Phone, Firefox, Ubuntu Touch, to Android, iOS, and KaiOS operating systems.