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Cloned iPhone X costs Chandler couple big

Posted at 5:43 PM, Dec 05, 2017

A holiday deal turned into a costly mistake for a Chandler couple. 

"Eight hundred and eighty dollars is close enough to the $1,000 price tag for one of these phones, so it didn't really set off any alarms in my head," said Jesse Arnold.

Arnold said he found the small savings on the iPhone X on the website OfferUp.

"The seller had history on OfferUp - over 27 things they've sold and all positive reviews," said Arnold.

So, what went wrong? Arnold said he and his wife met with the seller to get a closer look at the phone before purchasing it. 

When Arnold met up with the seller, the box was still sealed in cellophane. The phone looked legit and even had what looked like serial numbers on the back.  

"On the back of the box, there's a serial number right there. We had that serial number verified with Apple. It’s a legitimate serial number and the IMEI code also matches it and we were told that's the number they enter in their system to activate your service," said Arnold. 

They paid the seller, but when they tried to activate the phone at Cricket, they couldn't.

They soon found out while visually the phone was a perfect replica, the processor inside the phone was fake.

"There was a wireless update and it's an Android software feature," said Arnold.

Arnold reported it to Apple, but there was nothing the company could do.

The seller immediately cut off contact with the couple.

We went to the offer up website and found dozens of iPhone Xs boxed and ready to sell.

"People need to be careful if they're looking out for a good deal and they're not buying it directly from a retailer I would be really cautious about trusting anyone whether it’s a legitimate phone," said Arnold.

OfferUp has removed the seller from its website.

Arnold says when he contacted police they told him he would have to settle the dispute with the seller in small claims court.