Apple Stores won't repair iPhones that are marked as missing anymore

Green iPhone 13 and Alpine Green iPhone 13 Pro compared with Sierra Blue
Green iPhone 13 and Alpine Green iPhone 13 Pro compared with Sierra Blue (Image credit: Christine Romero-Chan / iMore)

What you need to know

  • Apple will no longer repair iPhones that have been marked as missing.
  • Devices marked on the GSMA Device Registry as missing will not be repaired by Apple Stores and Authorized Service Providers. -.

Apple and Authorized Service Providers will reportedly refuse to repair an iPhone that has been reported as missing in a change to the previous policy. Any device that has been reported as missing and placed on the GSMA Device Registry will no longer be eligible for service if required.

The move, reported by MacRumors which cites an internal memo, will require that devices have been marked as missing with that registry. The theory is that stolen iPhones will not be brought into Apple Stores for repair anymore.

If an Apple technician sees a message in their internal MobileGenius or GSX systems indicating that the device has been reported as missing, they are instructed to decline the repair, according to Apple's memo shared on Monday. The new policy should help to reduce the amount of stolen iPhones brought to Apple for repair.

The GSMA Device Registry is one that is global, hopefully preventing thieves from shipping stolen devices out of the country to have them repaired elsewhere.

Stolen iPhones are hot property among thieves given their high price and usually strong used market. However, with Find My being so important to Apple and its users it does add a layer of complication for thieves. Devices that cannot have their Find My connection disabled already posed problems for Apple repair technicians and it is often a good sign that an iPhone has been stolen, too.

Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too. Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.