January 13, 2022

How to Verify A Phone’s IMEI With Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA)

Pakistan has always been considered at the forefront when it comes to communications and the telecommunications market. It is largely down to its strong dedication to the communication industry and its history in driving innovation. The positive impact of this bright outlook shines through in the Pakistani PTA – also known as the Pakistani Telecommunication Authority. This body was set up in 1996 with a mission statement that includes setting up new laws for telecommunication technology, establishing and promoting a free-market economy for ICT services across Pakistan, and defending the interests of consumers by ensuring that quality service is maintained while simultaneously working to drive innovation throughout the country.

Before its formation, the Pakistan Telecommunication Ordinance 1994 drew out a regulatory framework for the telecom industry and pried open doors for creating authority. In 1996, the Telecom sector in Pakistan underwent reorganization under Telecommunication Reorganization Act 1996, and PTA was formed to act as a regulator. Under its supervision are different services available online supporting people of Pakistan to use Smartphones that need approval from PTA.

Today the Pakistani telecom sector is highly dynamic and active, operating with a reputable authority overseeing operations. It has evolved over several years, basically due to the efforts of numerous successive governments. Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) functions at the top level of administration and regulates all aspects of telecommunication in Pakistan. It has various services that it offers its users day-in and day-out. Smartphones are rather popular these days and hence need to be approved by PTA before they can be used without any issues on Pakistani networks.

To prevent non-compliant mobile devices from operating on local mobile networks, a new system called the Device Identification Registration and Blocking System or a short DIRBS has been launched. The goal is to ensure compliance by automatically registering compliant devices that operate on the networks and eventually blocking non-compliant devices. DIRBS stands for Device Identification Registration and Blocking System. One can then apply for a certificate of compliance to technical standards, ensuring only devices approved by the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) on different mobile networks are used. Due to necessity/hardship, people can also apply for this certificate if they want to use any SIM-enabled device (personally or as a gift) due to necessity/hardship. They can also register complaints with PTA’s portal while reporting SPAM, blocking promotional/unsolicited/marketing content, and blocking fraudulent or obnoxious calls and messages!

DIRBS is a system designed to identify and track non-compliant devices operating on a mobile network and block these devices. It also serves as an identity platform for compliant devices, making them easy to register on GSM networks. DIRBS has been implemented throughout Nepal, effective December 1st of this year, so both international passengers and importers must be aware of the correct procedures to register their mobile devices by Nepal Mobile Telephone (NMT) N O13C/2018 dated September 11th, 2018.

PTA has the following functions – to regulate the development and use of telecommunications within Pakistan and ensure all Pakistanis have access to a wide range of high-quality, efficient, cost-effective, and competitive telecommunications services. A mobile device is a very important part of our daily life. People use their mobile devices to connect, trade stocks and shares, buy groceries, pay utility bills, and many other things. Mobile phones have changed the traditional way we do business in today’s world. But there are some cultural restrictions and regulations in Pakistan that you will need to be aware of when working out how to transact smartphones within the local market. When buying a new or an old mobile device, ask for its PTA approval certificate. Ideally, you should get the PTA’s customs form or PECO test report, at least initially. It is easy to acquire certification from the PTA of your device from their website. It can save you money if it gets blocked after a few months.

The International Mobile Equipment Identity is the serial number uniquely identifies a mobile device. It is 15-digits long, and it operates independently from the network which carries it, meaning that your IMEI doesn’t change if you switch providers or purchase a new SIM for your current provider. Your IMEI cannot be seen or changed by any of these networks and will never change even if you swap out your battery. Even though it can be found entirely on an Apple device like an iPhone as a phone’s Weight (mass) in grams, the ID derives its name from having originally been created to identify mobiles operated by GSM providers on networks capable of handling both “international” (other) and “national” devices.

If your mobile device comes with a replaceable battery, remove it and find the IMEI number listed beneath it or on its packaging. The IMEI number is located beside the SIM card tray in a separate compartment from memory card slots. PTA maintains an extensive database of all the IMEIs of devices connected to their network. If a device is found to be using a PTA SIM card that doesn’t match the IMEI number provided by the network, it will be blocked as part of DIRBS/DVS. You can also verify any mobile device for use on PTA’s network in these three steps: 1) Find Device ID 2) Find Smart Label 3) Read Device Verification Value.

Through Code:

The easiest way to verify your phone’s IMEI number is by dialing a special code on the device itself and verifying the screen you are prompted with after the code has been entered. Open the dialer application on your mobile device and enter the IMEI verification code of *#06#. That takes care of one SIM chip and all of its associated information immediately. If you have an Android or Apple phone with two different SIM slots, you will see two numbers that look like IMEI codes as soon as you enter the numerical code into it. Each SIM arrangement has its unique IMEI number per mobile device.

Through Website:

If you want to confirm if your phone has been verified for use with PTA, here is a quick and easy step-by-step process: The first log onto the PTA website. Use the search bar at the top to find and click on ‘Mobile Verification.’ You will also be taken to a page where you must enter your 15-digit cellphone IMEI number. Placed your cursor over the ‘Check’ button and pressed it. Congratulations!

Through App:

Have you just bought a new phone? Want to find out whether you are using a PTA-approved mobile device or not? Here’s how to do it using the PTA device verification app. Begin downloading the PTA Device Verification System (DVS) app on your mobile device. You can download it for free from all the leading app stores. In the device verification section of your app, you’ll see a bar similar to what you see on the website, where you enter your 15-digit mobile IMEI number. If you don’t want to type, you can also scan the IMEI number through the option available in the application.

The PTA has requested that the government make it compulsory to have verified devices while registering. It means that only a few operators have the authority to unlock your device. You will only waste your time, money, and effort if you try to get your device unlocked from anyone else. Even if they manage to unlock your mobile phone, it can get blocked again at any time by the PTA as an unverified device. Before importing a device into Pakistan, one should keep in mind that if not registered within two months of doing so, a penalty of 1 million rupees or 20% of the value of the handset could be imposed on importers and sellers.

Through SMS:

Here’s how you can check whether any phone number is registered with the PTA or not. Once you have a mobile phone number, head to your inbox and draft a message at the top of the SMS field type in IMEI. Send this message to 8484. You should receive a reply that tells you whether or not PTA verifies the number within seconds!


There was a time in 2009 when Pakistan didn’t have an online database or any major way to check the mobile verification status of devices being used in the country. It led to thousands of mobile devices being sold in this country and illegal operations originating from them and causing trouble for others who had nothing to do with such matters. Tens of thousands of mobile devices often left or entered Pakistan without being properly verified first, and no centralized record existed to check any illegal activity. With so much of our new mobile technology being used for intended purposes, like in terrorists’ bomb blasts and other illegal activities, it became crucial to track all the mobile device records. It became even more essential for this issue to be taken into action. Finally, PTA entered the picture and put all available device records in an online database for people to see and approve before taking steps further with their own business.

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