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Industry consultation about stolen mobile phones.

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Media Release



Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister or Communications, Information Technology and the Arts

Manager of Government Business in the Senate


Industry consultation about stolen mobile phones


Senator Ian Campbel l, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Communications, Information Technology and the Arts, has completed consultations with major mobile phone carriers, industry associations, user groups, police representatives and independent software companies on the stolen mobile phone issue.


‘This is about giving consumers confidence in our mobile phone network. The mobile theft racket in Australia is estimated at between $65 and $100 million. I am very keen to see a conclusion and implementation of a solution to this issue within a short period of time,’ said Senator Campbell.


‘Today I met with the Australian Communications Authority (ACA) and requested that the ACA place the issue of stolen mobile phones and the use of IMEL (International Mobile Equipment Identification) numbers on the agenda for the Law Enforcement Advisory Committee’s (LEAC) next meeting on March 12.’


The ACA will report back to Senator Campbell by the end of the month with substantive recommendations on the matter.


He said that there was growing support that a register or database of stolen mobile phones be established and maintained so the phones can be disabled or traced. These measures are aimed at destroying the value of handsets in the black market, and particularly the drug trade.


Senator Campbell said that subject to this advice the Government will be seeking the cooperation of mobile phone carriers to find an answer to the problem.


‘I am confident that the advice determined by LEAC coupled with the enthusiasm of all parties to find a solution to the issue will see this matter progress to a clear outcome,’ Senator Campbell concluded.


Media contact: Georgia-Kate Schubert: Senator Campbell’s office,

0419 265234 Website:


4 March 1999