News-CRUX-10     25th July 2023        

Context: The Central Equipment Identity Register (CEIR) of the department of telecommunications ( DoT) has traced 285,000 lost or stolen mobile phones and blocked 680,000 devices since being launched.

  • However, recoveries remain relatively low at 20,771 devices.

Central Equipment Identity Register (CEIR)

  • Launched nationwide on May 16, the CEIR is a part of the DoT´s Sanchar Saathi portal.
    • The National Telecom Policy of 2012 calls for the establishment of a National Mobile Property Registry to address the issue of security, theft, and other concerns including reprogramming of mobile handsets.
  • CEIR is the citizen centric portal of Department of Telecommunications for tracing the lost/stolen mobile devices. 
  • It is the primary government platform aimed at protecting mobile phone users from various frauds such as identity theft, forged KYC, theft of mobile devices and banking frauds.
  • People can find out the mobile connections issued in their name, get unrequired connections disconnected, block or trace lost mobile phones and check the genuineness of devices while buying a new or old mobile phone.
  • The CEIR system provides telecom operators with access to both the international mobile equipment identity (IMEI) number of the device and the associated mobile number.
  • It was already being utilised in Dadra and Nagar Haveli, parts of Maharashtra, and Delhi since 2019 as part of a pilot programme.
  • Although criminals usually try to modify the IMEI number of stolen mobile phones, CEIR is designed to see through that.
  • This also facilitates for blocking of lost/stolen mobile devices in network of all telecom operators so that lost/stolen devices can not be used in India. 
  • If anyone tries to use the blocked mobile phone, its traceability is generated.
  • Once mobile phone is found it may be unblocked on the portal for its normal use by the citizens.