Saturday, January 24, 2009

IMEI – International Mobile Equipment Identity

International Mobile Equipment Identity or also known as IMEI is a unique number assigned to all mobile phones (GSM, UMTS, CDMA) and some of the satellite phones. The IMEI number is the unique identifier of a mobile phone, like fingerprints to human beings. IMEI is used by the Network operator to identify the mobile device and its status.


There are a few ways to find your mobile phone's IMEI

  1. Remove the Back cover of the Phone, and Remove the battery. Beneath the battery, you will find the IMEI number along with model numbers and Other relevant information.
  2. On the Warranty Card, Box, Package of the Phone
  3. By Typing *#06# in the Standby Screen. This will retrieve the IMEI from the Phone. This code works in all mobile phone's regardless of its manufacturer. 

 Advantages of the IMEI

  1. If you your mobile phone is stolen, you can call your network provider and you can instruct them to Black list your phone's IMEI number, So that it cannot be used inside the country. In some cases, you will have to present proof of purchase to your Network operator to verify its your own mobile phone.
  2. If you lost your mobile phone, or if it's stolen you can instruct your network provider to monitor its usage and eventually you will be able to locate where the phone is being used and by whom.


Disadvantages of IMEI

  1. There are certain Tools that will allow you to change your IMEI. So its not always 100% legit and genuine.
  2. Your network provider can track you wherever you use the phone. (Well if you're a thief, it's a disadvantage, isn't it?)


Structure of the IMEI

IMEI numbers either come in a 17 digit or 15 digit sequences of numbers. The IMEI format currently utilized is AA-BBBBBB-CCCCCC-D:

  • AA: These two digits are for the Reporting Body Identifier, indicating the GSMA approved group that allocated the TAC (Type Allocation Code).
  • BBBBBB: The remainder of the TAC
  • CCCCCC: Serial sequence of the Model
  • D: Luhn check digit of the entire model or 0 (This is an algorithm that validates the ID number)

Central Equipment Identity Register (CEIR)

If a mobile handset is lost or stolen, the owner of the device can contact the CEIR (Central Equipment Identity Register) which will blacklist the device in all currently operating switches. This makes the lost or stolen handset unusable. The action of blacklisting stolen mobile handsets is seen as a deterrent to crime. It is possible, however, to change an IMEI with special tools and there are certain mobile networks that do not automatically blacklist handsets registered with the CEIR. Current statistics state that approximately ten percent of IMEI's in use today are not unique or have been reprogrammed (hacked).


CEIR Classification of Handsets




Valid Mobile Station


Mobile Station to be tracked


Barred Mobile Station


So here's another Magic Site i discovered lately, Most of you out there might know about this, but for those on the other side, keep on reading. 

The site is

With this site you can analyze your IMEI and you can obtain all information stored in your IMEI number, such as Manufactured Model, type, date, country and approval of handset. 

So , Click Here to analyze your IMEI number.

Click here to use the other analyzing tools, in this page you can analyze your IMSI, SIM numbers as well. 

Here's a result of a IMEI i found on the internet. You can see what details you can view through this tool.