Question

phone placed on blacklist by unlock code reseller


Badge

I'm not a t-mobile customer, but I need help untangling a peculiar situation.  I own a Samsung A5 2017 (SM-A520W) and I've purchased a code to unlock it (it was originally locked to Bell mobility, a Canadian mobile carrier). Long story short, I had not received the unlock code 5 days after ordering (they advised it could take up to 4 days), and they weren't responding to my emails. On day 7, I've filed a claim to PayPal, and they issued a reimbursement. I then receive an email on day 8 from the seller, threatening me to back out of the PayPal claim, or else he would put my phone on the GSMA blacklist. For an unknown reason, this reseller was able to mark my phone as "blocked" using T-Mobile's access to the database.

I contacted support and they first refused to help because I was not a t-mobile customer. I'm from Montreal, Quebec, Canada. Canadian citizens most likely can't have an account. The phone was never locked to T-Mobile. As a matter of fact, the device is not even compatible with the carrier! After insisting and keeping the agent on the line for almost an hour, they agreed to send my request for verification and told me I would be contacted on Friday, which never happened.

I'm a bit at a loss here, and would need someone to provide some guidance on how I can get myself out of this sticky catch 22 (I can't request to remove my device from the blacklist since I'm not a customer, but I can't be a customer in the first place).

Can someone assist? Thanks in advance


21 replies

Userlevel 7
Badge +13

Unfortunately only the person who puts the block on the phone can unblock it.

Badge

Unfortunately only the person who puts the block on the phone can unblock it.

Indeed, that's what normally needs to happen, but the phone has never been under contract or locked to T-Mobile. My device was put on the blacklist by a shady unlock code reseller, not because it was declared lost or stolen, or because I had an outstanding balance due. 

Userlevel 7
Badge +13

That's what can happen when you give someone your imei number.

It's always safest to get the phone unlocked by the manufacturer.

Badge

That's what can happen when you give someone your imei number.

It's always safest to get the phone unlocked by the manufacturer.

Indeed, it's preferable, but not always possible (phone was locked to a carrier I was not subscribed to).

This being said, would someone with a t-mobile account in good standing be able to help me ? It's not blacklisted for fraud/theft, it's in a "blocked" status (from what I found, it would have something to do with an unpaid balance, which is blatantly incorrect, because the phone never was under contract / locked to t-mobile). A quick verification of the GSMA by a support agent can clear all this matter and confirm my claim.

Userlevel 7
Badge +13

You may want to go to reddit’s Tmobile forum. There's Tmobile employees that frequent there and one of them may help or have a suggestion for you.

Userlevel 7
Badge +14

All cell phones in Canada are sold SIM unlocked.  That is the law in Canada, which was introduced back in 2013.

Badge

All cell phones in Canada are sold SIM unlocked.  That is the law in Canada, which was introduced back in 2013.

All devices sold after December 1, 2017 need to be unlocked. The device in question was under contract with Bell mobility before that date, hence why it needed unlocking.

Userlevel 7
Badge +14

All cell phones in Canada are sold SIM unlocked.  That is the law in Canada, which was introduced back in 2013.

All devices sold after December 1, 2017 need to be unlocked. The device in question was under contract with Bell mobility before that date, hence why it needed unlocking.

Then under the CTRC’s wireless code, Bell Mobility would have had to unlock at device for free at your request.

Badge

I've reached out to T-Mobile's twitter account, and they've escalated my request : they can see the device was placed on the blacklist using T-Mobile's access to the GSMA database, but they are unable to change the status because the phone was not purchased from T-Mobile (which is a strange loophole they should consider closing sooner than later)... 

Badge

All cell phones in Canada are sold SIM unlocked.  That is the law in Canada, which was introduced back in 2013.

All devices sold after December 1, 2017 need to be unlocked. The device in question was under contract with Bell mobility before that date, hence why it needed unlocking.

Then under the CTRC’s wireless code, Bell Mobility would have had to unlock at device for free at your request.

Indeed, given I was a Bell Canada customer. You need to be a customer for them to go ahead with the request. 

Userlevel 7
Badge +14

All cell phones in Canada are sold SIM unlocked.  That is the law in Canada, which was introduced back in 2013.

All devices sold after December 1, 2017 need to be unlocked. The device in question was under contract with Bell mobility before that date, hence why it needed unlocking.

Then under the CTRC’s wireless code, Bell Mobility would have had to unlock at device for free at your request.

Indeed, given I was a Bell Canada customer. You need to be a customer for them to go ahead with the request. 

Being a Bell Canada Customer is not a requirement.  As long as you can prove the device was sold by Bell, they are required under Canadian law to remove the SIM lock at your request.  Even if you aren’t the original owner.  

Badge

All cell phones in Canada are sold SIM unlocked.  That is the law in Canada, which was introduced back in 2013.

All devices sold after December 1, 2017 need to be unlocked. The device in question was under contract with Bell mobility before that date, hence why it needed unlocking.

Then under the CTRC’s wireless code, Bell Mobility would have had to unlock at device for free at your request.

Indeed, given I was a Bell Canada customer. You need to be a customer for them to go ahead with the request. 

Being a Bell Canada Customer is not a requirement.  As long as you can prove the device was sold by Bell, they are required under Canadian law to remove the SIM lock at your request.  Even if you aren’t the original owner.  

Maybe, I still prefer to pay a couple bucks to get the phone unlocked than having to deal with their horrible customer support.

Notwithstanding, the device is unlocked, that's not the problem. What I'm trying to get sorted out is the fact that it's been placed on t-mobile's blacklist.

Userlevel 7
Badge +14

If T-Mobile placed it on the blacklist.  I don’t get why they can’t remove it.  As far as I am aware, the blacklist for devices is for all carriers, both US and Canadian.  If your device is blacklisted on T-Mobile, it will be blacklisted on every other US and Canadian carrier.  If T-Mobile made that entry, they should be able to correct it.  Being a device that is not a T-Mobile sold device, makes me think it was not blacklisted by T-Mobile.  Proving you are the owner of the device should be enough to get removed though, especially if you are the original owner of the device.  

Badge

 

Badge

 

Badge

I know this is not an usual encounter, but it looks like some sort of loophole that allows devices to be placed on the blacklist, but not removed.

Userlevel 7
Badge +14

I hope they can get that resolved for you.  Bell's customer service might be bad, but it still would have been quicker than having to go through this mess. 

Badge

I hope they can get that resolved for you.  Bell's customer service might be bad, but it still would have been quicker than having to go through this mess. 

With Bell, you never know which way it’s going to go, it can come back and bite you years after the fact.  It’s a mess, but It also is a learning opportunity.  I’ll probably go with the safer route next time :grinning:

Userlevel 3
Badge +3

I'm not a t-mobile customer, but I need help untangling a peculiar situation.  I own a Samsung A5 2017 (SM-A520W) and I've purchased a code to unlock it (it was originally locked to Bell mobility, a Canadian mobile carrier). Long story short, I had not received the unlock code 5 days after ordering (they advised it could take up to 4 days), and they weren't responding to my emails. On day 7, I've filed a claim to PayPal, and they issued a reimbursement. I then receive an email on day 8 from the seller, threatening me to back out of the PayPal claim, or else he would put my phone on the GSMA blacklist. For an unknown reason, this reseller was able to mark my phone as "blocked" using T-Mobile's access to the database.

 

 

Just curious, what was the cost for the unlock code?

 

If inexpensive, seems like a lot of hassle to work around it.

 

 

Badge

I'm not a t-mobile customer, but I need help untangling a peculiar situation.  I own a Samsung A5 2017 (SM-A520W) and I've purchased a code to unlock it (it was originally locked to Bell mobility, a Canadian mobile carrier). Long story short, I had not received the unlock code 5 days after ordering (they advised it could take up to 4 days), and they weren't responding to my emails. On day 7, I've filed a claim to PayPal, and they issued a reimbursement. I then receive an email on day 8 from the seller, threatening me to back out of the PayPal claim, or else he would put my phone on the GSMA blacklist. For an unknown reason, this reseller was able to mark my phone as "blocked" using T-Mobile's access to the database.

 

 

Just curious, what was the cost for the unlock code?

 

If inexpensive, seems like a lot of hassle to work around it.

 

 

It was less than 30 CAD, it varies depending on phone types and / or carriers, but it’s never too expensive if you shop around... I always had positive experiences until now.  Shit really hit the fan this time :joy:

Badge

Support came back saying they were not able to remove the block list because a) the device was never carrier locked to T-mobile b) they weren’t the one to place the device on the list … In other words, make sure you don’t get your phone added to the GSMA block list by anyone other than the carrier or else your device will be a useless brick stuck in limbo … 

Reply