For a thief, this plan would have been easy money. Steal a few iPhones, restore them, and sell them on Gazelle. However that’s no longer going to be possible.
Gazelle has now partnered with Checkmend, GigaOM reports. Every time it receives a device, it will run it through the Checkmend database to check for a dubious history. If your device comes up positive, then it’s return to sender.
Gazelle CMO Sarah Welch:
We are closing off a channel for getting rid of stolen products. The vast majority of trade-ins we get are completely legitimate. Mostly it’s people looking to upgrade to the latest and greatest iPhone. So we believe it’s a very small issue but at the same time we do not want to be a party to creating incentives for anyone to steal those products.
Gazelle is a very popular way for customers to trade in old Apple devices ahead of new launches. During the iPhone 5 keynote, 2 older iPhones were traded in every second.
Checkmend’s database checks the device against all sorts of lists and other databases, including the FBI’s. It’s great to see another selling option for stolen devices shut down.