The Second Life of Your Stolen Smartphone

Sept. 9, 2015 - In Brazil, high sales and import taxes are part of the reason that the price of a new iPhone is now more than $1,200 (U.S), the highest price in the world. The cost has created a divide between those who can afford a smartphone and those who can't, but still want one. Locals say having a smartphone is critical in today's job market, and the phone has also become a status symbol, a sign of one's wealth. As a result, illegal smartphones are increasingly common, some counterfeit and some stolen inthe United States. The phones often end up in Brazilian retail shops, and customers can't tell if the phone is legal. Brazilian customs agents are working to shrink this black market by finding and seizing illegal phones.

READ MORE: Inside the Vast (and Growing) Global Trade in Stolen Smart Phones