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a835...is this legal?



 
 
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  #11  
Old June 24th 04, 03:16 AM
michael turner
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On Wed, 23 Jun 2004 11:58:25 -0700, gopi wrote:

michael turner wrote in message .. .
Changing a phone's IMEI is most definately illegal (upto 5 years in
prison), and is virtually impossible on some handsets, e.g. Nokia DCT4.


What country/ies is it illegal in? Given that this is a rather global
newsgroup, it's important to be clear which laws you are referring to.


Europe, USA, Austrialia, New Zealand, and I'm sure there's quite a
few more. The main exeptions would seem to be some African countries.

--
Michael Turner
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  #12  
Old June 24th 04, 04:34 AM
Jer
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John S. wrote:
I would challenge those here, who are saying it's illegal to change an IMEI



And you woul lose!


I say horse-****.



How little you know! I suspect that the GSM companies have lobied the local
authorities to legislate this.

Your tirade (all of the rest of which has been left out) is just that and
doesn't change the fact that it IS illegal in all the civilized world.

--
John S.
e-mail responses to - john at kiana dot net



Considering the millions that cellular carriers have spent on their own
fraud prevention programs over the last 10-15 years, one would think a
little federal legislation would help clean the stable just a wee bit.
Oh, did I mention the CTIA has always had the attention of congress
where fraud prevention is concerned?

--
jer email reply - I am not a 'ten'
"All that we do is touched with ocean, yet we remain on the shore of
what we know." -- Richard Wilbur

  #14  
Old June 25th 04, 07:56 AM
Todd Allcock
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wrote in message ...
I would challenge those here, who are saying it's illegal to change an IMEI

The US, Europe, Africa, etc. You're telling me, that in the few years GSM
phones have been around all of these nations have agreed and legislated,
that changing an IMEI is illegal? I say horse-****.


Equine excrement to you to! ;-)

The problem with your theory, is that the law isn't always so
specific. For example, if I invent the Star Trek "phaser" gun
tomorrow, I can't go around killing people with it because the law
hasn't banned ray-guns yet... murder is already very illegal.

Similarly, the US government took care of IMEI changing in Title 18,
Part I, Chapter 47, Section 1029, which makes a criminal of anyone
who... "uses, produces, traffics in, has control or custody of, or
possesses a telecommunications instrument that has been modified or
altered to obtain unauthorized use of telecommunications services..."

or... "knowingly and with intent to defraud produces, uses, or
traffics in one or more counterfeit access devices" (the law defines
'access device' to mean "any card, plate, code, account number,
electronic serial number, mobile identification number, personal
identification number, or other telecommunications service, equipment,
or instrument identifier"...

So, since our OP seems to be wanting to change an IMEI to use a phone
his insurance company has reimbursed him for the loss of, that, at
least in the USA, would fit the definition of altering the device
"with the intent to defraud"...

For them
to have got laws on the books criminalising the changing of a cellphone IMEI in
such a short space of time is very hard to believe.


Again, the law wouldn't specifically have to refer to an IMEI, just as
the US laws do not.


Is it also illegal, to change to MAC address of your ethernet card? It's essentially
the same thing, as a phone's IMEI.


Technicaly, perhaps, but since a subscription service isn't involved,
it doesn't have the same ramifications with respect to fraud.

Even with the US law, the actual changing of the IMEI isn't the
illegal part- it's WHY you changed it. As you yourself stated, if
there actually was a legitimate reason to change it, it'd technically
be legal.

Damned if I can think of a legitimate reason, however!

It's hardly surprising, that people would think it was illegal - or to want it to be
illegal. I can think of plenty reasons why someone would WANT to change their
IMEI, but none of them are legitimate. Stolen phones. Drugs. Terrorism. Is there
anyone here who can offer a legitimate reason for changing their IMEI?


I'm coming up blank!

But back to the point. Like I said, I would seriously challenge whether it's
"illegal" yet.


I've picked up your gauntlet, sir, and offer you a slap with it! ;-)
At least where American law is concerned.

I'll leave the postings of other countries' laws to their citizens.

Undoubtedly the phone companies would like you to think so,
maybe the manufacturers too. But have any of them really persuaded governments
to sit down and pass laws on the subject?


In the States, yes. Motorola was very active in pushing cellular
anti-fraud legislation in the early to mid-90's, when analog phone
"cloning" was costing cellphone providers millions.

I think I'd like to see it in writing or at
least, from a lawyer.


Sorry, just a civilian here who can cut and paste the US Code when
necessary...
  #15  
Old June 25th 04, 02:01 PM
gopi
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(Todd Allcock) wrote in message . com...
The problem with your theory, is that the law isn't always so
specific. For example, if I invent the Star Trek "phaser" gun


It's a common problem when techies read the law. They assume it should
be as precise as code.

For them
to have got laws on the books criminalising the changing of a cellphone IMEI in
such a short space of time is very hard to believe.

Again, the law wouldn't specifically have to refer to an IMEI, just as
the US laws do not.


Cellphone muggings have been in the news for years. What
counter-argument would you use to stop a law banning IMEI changing?
The OP cited many controversial examples of laws that people fight
over. He may want to debate this, but if you can't come up with one or
two sentences explaining why IMEI-changing shouldn't be banned, you
will be ignored by lawmakers.

Is it also illegal, to change to MAC address of your ethernet card? It's essentially
the same thing, as a phone's IMEI.

Technicaly, perhaps, but since a subscription service isn't involved,
it doesn't have the same ramifications with respect to fraud.


If you had DSL service that specified one, and only one computer, and
that you must notify them if your computer changes, hacking your MAC
address would probably be illegal.

I'll remind you of the DMCA from 1998. It's illegal to use a device to
bypass an access control system, even if what you were doing was
legal. Fair use doctrine says that some copying is permitted - the
DMCA says that if the media is encrypted, merely bypassing it is
illegal. It utterly guts fair use and criminalizes going against the
wishes of a copyright holder, a fundamental change from the past where
your rights as a copyright holder were determined by law rather than
your wish/business model.

Even with the US law, the actual changing of the IMEI isn't the
illegal part- it's WHY you changed it. As you yourself stated, if
there actually was a legitimate reason to change it, it'd technically
be legal.

Damned if I can think of a legitimate reason, however!


By the letter of the law, you're acting as if it's guilty until proven
innocent. Obviously in front of a jury they'd be asking questions like
"why were you waiting in the bushes with a baseball bat and
chloroform?", but you don't actually need a legitimate reason. If I
bought my phone direct from the manufacturer, changed the IMEI number,
and then paid for service for the phone, I really wouldn't need to
justify myself.

How cryptographically secure is the IMEI exchange with the network?

Privacy could be one argument - it is legal for me to wear a disguise.
The SIM card proves I am a subscriber. The law says I must have
nefarious intent.

I've picked up your gauntlet, sir, and offer you a slap with it! ;-)
At least where American law is concerned.

I'll leave the postings of other countries' laws to their citizens.


Based on your reading of fraud laws, it may be illegal in other
countries as well, without explicit laws. I found a link to UK law
that said changing the IMEI was illegal if you didn't make the phone,
or have written permission from the manufacturer. Proving criminal
intent is hard.

In the States, yes. Motorola was very active in pushing cellular
anti-fraud legislation in the early to mid-90's, when analog phone
"cloning" was costing cellphone providers millions.


Right. Did you know that you can't buy a radio receiver that can pick
up cellular frequencies in the US? Radio receivers must be difficult
to modify to remove this limit - in practice the FCC has interpreted
this to mean that reprogrammable firmware is not enough. Scanners for
picking up police, fire, the military, and pretty much everything else
are legal. It's just cellular that got the special treatment.
  #16  
Old June 25th 04, 03:40 PM
John S.
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He hasn't lost until you've cited the law...


Well, I am not going to search the FCC/Federal register or the particular law.
He can do that if he really wants to know that detail.

It is against the law regardless of whether I site the particular law or not.
Ignorance of the law is no defence in the USA.

--
John S.
e-mail responses to - john at kiana dot net
  #17  
Old June 25th 04, 03:44 PM
John S.
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Sorry, just a civilian here who can cut and paste the US Code when
necessary...


I think that there is also a law in place in the FCC rules that says ONLY a
manufactrer can alter a serial number (IMEI or ESN). You might have it
somewhere at your fingertips like you just provided in your previous message.

This being the case, any individual altering the number is breaking yet another
law. And the manufacturers won't change it for you for sure.

--
John S.
e-mail responses to - john at kiana dot net
  #18  
Old June 26th 04, 12:30 AM
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I would challenge those here, who are saying it's illegal to change an IMEI

And you woul lose!


I don't see I have lost, yet... your mail contains no factual information whatsoever,
indeed it goes on to say

How little you know! I suspect that the GSM companies have lobied the local
authorities to legislate this.


You suspect? Like I said, I still await proof.

As has been pointed out by others, and as I had "suspected", it is NOT
illegal to change an IMEI. Period. What is illegal, is doing anything
fraudulent with it afterwards - i.e. having changed it with fraudulent intent.

This is as it should be.

One of the others defined "intent". Taking it a stage further, would I be doing
something illegal if I had a baseball bat and a bottle of chloroform in the trunk
of my car, rather than hiding in the bushes? There are plenty reasons why I'd
have a bat in the trunk. I might be a vet, (dunno if they use the stuff but anyway)
or someone with a legitimate use for chloroform.

The point I'm making, is that I seriously doubt whether it's changing the IMEI that's
illegal. Doing ANYTHING with fraudulent intent, is. You cannot simply take this law
and apply it to the act of changing the IMEI by itself.

I remain convinced that it is not illegal...

Regards

Eye


  #19  
Old June 26th 04, 01:00 AM
John S.
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your mail contains no factual information whatsoever,

Yes it does. I have said - "It is illegal to change the IMEI or ESN number of a
cellular phone".

That's a fact.

--
John S.
e-mail responses to - john at kiana dot net
  #20  
Old June 26th 04, 01:57 AM
michael turner
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On Wed, 23 Jun 2004 17:52:14 -0500, Eyeball wrote:

I would challenge those here, who are saying it's illegal to change an
IMEI

The US, Europe, Africa, etc. You're telling me, that in the few years
GSM phones have been around all of these nations have agreed and
legislated, that changing an IMEI is illegal? I say horse-****.


Wanna bet ?


As I'm in the UK, we've got the "Mobile Telephones (Re-programming)" Act
2002"
http://www.hmso.gov.uk/acts/acts2002/20020031.htm

----------------
1 Re-programming mobile telephone etc.

(1) A person commits an offence if-

(a) he changes a unique device identifier, or

(b) he interferes with the operation of a unique device identifier.

(2) A unique device identifier is an electronic equipment identifier
which is unique to a mobile wireless communications device.

(3) But a person does not commit an offence under this section if-

(a) he is the manufacturer of the device, or

(b) he does the act mentioned in subsection (1) with the written consent
of the manufacturer of the device.

(4) A person guilty of an offence under this section is liable-

(a) on summary conviction, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6
months or to a fine not exceeding the statutory maximum or to both, or

(b) on conviction on indictment, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding
5 years or to a fine or to both.
--------------


ameriKKKan blog snipped

--
Michael Turner
Email (ROT13)

 




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