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Optus gets tough on mobile theft
15 Sep 2003

Optus has made it even harder for GSM mobile phone thieves today by introducing technology that stops lost or stolen phones from being used on any Australian mobile network.

As part of an industry-wide initiative, Optus will share information on handsets reported as lost or stolen on its network. The other carriers will share the same information, resulting in lost or stolen handsets rendered useless on Australian mobile networks.

Allen Lew, Managing Director, Optus Mobile said Optus was proud to be part of the industry-wide initiative.

"The intercarrier solution implemented is a world first and provides Australian consumers with a sophisticated deterrent against mobile theft.

"The industry estimates approximately 100,000 handsets are reported lost or stolen each year. Individual carriers have implemented blocking on their own networks but this initiative provides an additional layer of protection for consumers," Mr Lew said.

Each mobile handset has an electronic serial number known as an international mobile equipment identity (IMEI). The solution works by anti-theft technology detecting a mobile handset's IMEI then blocking it from accessing a mobile network.

"It is still very important for Optus customers to 'mind their mobile' and avoid the inconvenience caused by having it lost or stolen.

"Optus customers who believe their phone to be lost or stolen should call 1300 300 937," said Mr Lew.

IMEI numbers are independent of the phone number and are usually written underneath the battery on the back of the handset. Mobile phone users can also check their 15 digit IMEI number by dialling *#06# on their mobile handset.

For more information:
Germaine Graham
Optus Corporate Affairs
Tel: (02) 9342 5042