We’re proud to have helped Columbus residents responsibly recycle over 13,000 phones since we launched ecoATM last October. In that time, there have been a small handful of dishonest thieves who have tried to sell us stolen phones. In each of these instances, we’ve been able to help police return the phones to their rightful owners and identify the criminals who stole them. Of the allegedly stolen phones recovered for victims by ecoATM, more than half were stolen by a single suspect who has since been arrested thanks to assistance from ecoATM.
We have been working with the Columbus PD on a regular basis since October yet today was the first day that we became aware of a Do Not Buy database. While there is no legal requirement for us to integrate with this database and the police have never asked us to do so, we have voluntarily offered to work with the police on a way to implement this.
There are hundreds of places someone could sell a phone in Columbus. Because ecoATM collects photographs, verifies ID, takes thumbprints, and reports all of our transactions to the police, ecoATM is the worst option for a thief to sell a stolen phone. We're committed to providing a convenient and safe way for people to recycle their old phones, and we will continue working closely with the Columbus police to identify and investigate any issues related to stolen property.