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royhandy

join:2012-11-05
USA

[Need Info] Does a phone without a SIM contact towers?

I bought a cheap AT&T phone for my daughter to use as an entertainment device. We never activated the actual telephone service on the device and the SIM is not installed. She can still make emergency calls, though, (at least the phone's OS states that this is the case) and I wondered if this means that the phone is still contacting towers.

It's a crazy world and if the phone is contacting towers and being "tracked" ( I don't like using that word because I think it makes me seem paranoid) then in an emergency LE should be able to locate the phone, correct? If this is the case, is there anything I should record about the phone's identifiers? Should I write down the IMEI?


Cabal
Premium
join:2007-01-21
Reviews:
·Suddenlink
Yes x3.

If you're concerned about it contacting the towers, you could put it in airplane mode. However, if you want airplane mode + wifi, you may need a 3rd party app, depending on OS.
--
If you can't open it, you don't own it.

royhandy

join:2012-11-05
USA
Thanks for the info. I don't mind the phone being "tracked". I will record the IMEI.


SysOp

join:2001-04-18
Douglasville, GA
Reviews:
·MetroPCS

1 edit
reply to royhandy
You put much faith into a cell phone with out service.

I have my doubts that 911 can just pool the cellular network for an unregisterd phone that may or may not belong to you.

If you want that level of service, buy this:

»www.amberalertgps.com/


RR Conductor
NWP RR Inc.,serving NW CA
Premium
join:2002-04-02
Redwood Valley, CA
kudos:1
said by SysOp:

You put much faith into a cell phone with out service.

I have my doubts that 911 can just pool the cellular network for an unregisterd phone that may or may not belong to you.

If you want that level of service, buy this:

»www.amberalertgps.com/

It's the law, just like a landline HAS to allow 911 calls, whether it's active or not (at least here in CA), and you can dial 911 on Payphones without money.
--
»www.nwprailroad.com
»www.nwprr.net
»www.skunktrain.com
»www.amtrak.com
»www.amtrakcalifornia.com
»www.up.com
»www.bnsf.com


SysOp

join:2001-04-18
Douglasville, GA
Reviews:
·MetroPCS

4 edits
Wait. What?

Yes, incoming 911 calls. The phone will dial 911 and they may or may not be able to obtain the location during the call.

No, not for outgoing calls from 911 to the unregistered cell phone. I doubt giving an IMEI to a 911 operator will locate or call an unregistered cell phone based on what I've read about how the 911 system works.

But Jesus could. And, you don't have to prepray for service. Coverage area is limited, and what ever happens is part of Gods plan. Just top off with faith in any amount when you need more minuets. Free wireless voice mail, but poor customer service. It's a miracle if you ever get through to a live person.

When a cellular phone is deactivated, the phone number is often recycled to a new user, or to a new phone for the same user. The deactivated cell phone will still complete a 9-1-1 call (if it has battery power) but the 9-1-1 operator will see a specialized number indicating the cell phone has been deactivated. It is usually represented with an area code of (911)-xxx-xxxx. If the call is disconnected, the 9-1-1 operator will not be able to connect to the original caller. Also because the cell phone is no longer activated, the 9-1-1 operator is often unable to get Phase II information.

royhandy

join:2012-11-05
USA
reply to SysOp
I don't put any faith into a cellphone without service. I just figured that if there's even a slight chance that the IMEI could be used to locate (not put a call to) the phone then I should probably record it somewhere.


NetFixer
Bah Humbug
Premium
join:2004-06-24
The Boro
Reviews:
·Cingular Wireless
·Comcast Business..
·Vonage
said by royhandy:

I don't put any faith into a cellphone without service. I just figured that if there's even a slight chance that the IMEI could be used to locate (not put a call to) the phone then I should probably record it somewhere.

Without an active SIM, don't count on even an E911 equipped emergency services call center being able to get any geolocaton information (and many 911 call centers...even in high density urban areas...don't have full E911 support). You may be able to dial 911 (and even get an answer), but you will have to manually supply location information to the operator (and my experience has been that even with an active cell phone account that is usually the case...you are lucky if the call is routed to the correct state, much less the correct city/county).
--
A well-regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.

When governments fear people, there is liberty. When the people fear the government, there is tyranny.