Frequently Asked Questions
WHAT IS THE ‘PHONE IT FORWARD’ CAMPAIGN PROGRAM?
The average American replaces their cell phone every 18 months. Many times, older devices are discarded or thrown into a drawer and forgotten. Millions of electronic devices are left behind in lost-and-found every year. The ‘Phone It Forward’ campaign was created as a charitable opportunity to allow individuals, businesses, and organizations the opportunity to 'pay it forward' to their communities by donating unused electronic devices to help victims in need, and also to help keep landfills free of e-waste.
IS MY DONATION TAX-DEDUCTIBLE?
Yes! All donations are tax-deductible and a donation certificate will be provided to you. Click here for a tax donation receipt form and free shipping label.
OUR COMPANY WOULD LIKE TO PARTICIPATE. HOW CAN WE PROMOTE THIS TO OUR EMPLOYEES?
Promotional posters are provided as printable pdf, and hard copy posters are available upon request. Generally, Human Resources is a good place to start – this allows employees a safe place to turn in their old devices where they can be securely held for safekeeping before being mailed out. Make it a fun event: Each employee who donates a device could be entered in a raffle drawing for your company to issue prizes or other perks. Don’t forget to email reminders to your employees throughout the campaign – it can be hard to remember when the devices are sitting at home in a drawer or closet! Feel free to call 866-290-7864 or email us for more information.
I’M CONCERNED ABOUT THE PERSONAL INFORMATION CONTAINED ON MY DEVICE. WHAT IS YOUR DATA REMOVAL PROTOCOL?
We guarantee secure data erasure of devices. We utilize state-of-the-art data-clearing software, and the erasure is documented internally. The software is certified to provide data erasure to the latest DOD 5220.22-M standards and is continually being updated as advances are made in the technology for clearing these devices. We check to confirm data erasure at least three times during processing. Items that are damaged or unusable are securely disposed of through an ISO 14001 R2 certified recycler.
IS THERE ANYTHING I NEED TO DO WITH MY DEVICE BEFORE DONATING IT?
APPLE DEVICES: If you own an Apple product, you will need to disable the activation lock feature on your device before sending it in for donation. Simply sign out of your iCloud before factory resetting it. You can do this by going to Settings > Apple ID > Sign Out. After that, Settings > General > Reset > Erase All Content and Settings.
ANDROID DEVICES: Turn off the phone and then press and hold the Volume Up key and Power key simultaneously until the Android system recovery screen appears. Use the Volume Down key to highlight the “wipe data/factory reset” option and then use the Power button to make the selection.
DO YOU ACCEPT BROKEN AND/OR SEVERELY CRACKED DEVICES?
Yes! If the device still works, we may either replace the screen or use it for parts on another device. If any device doesn’t pass clearing, then we remove the motherboard for secure recycling and use the item for parts. A device is deemed unusable if it cannot be cleared of user data, it does not work and cannot be repaired, or it is obsolete and cannot access a wireless network. These devices are considered e-waste and are either used for parts in another repair or are recycled with an ISO 14001 R2 certified electronic recycler.
SOME OF MY DEVICES DO NOT HAVE BATTERIES OR BACK COVERS. IS THAT AN ISSUE FOR YOU?
We are happy to accept these items as well. We can still work with them by either 1) replacing the missing parts, 2) using them for parts, or 3) responsibly recycling them. If the back cover is missing but the battery is still intact, simply secure it to the device with clear packing tape for safe travel.
WHY SHOULDN’T I TRY TO SELL MY DEVICE THROUGH AN ONLINE SITE?
Selling items may sound attractive but consider what is most important: protecting the sensitive information contained on the device along with your privacy. The 911 Cell Phone Bank proudly guarantees complete data erasure of devices.
YOUR SERVICES ARE DESCRIBED AS BEING 100% FREE, INCLUDING SHIPPING. WHAT SHIPPING SERVICE DO YOU USE?
We currently utilize FedEx and USPS. Click here to print a free shipping label and donation receipt form.
WHAT IF MY COMPANY HAS A LARGE NUMBER OF ITEMS TO DONATE?
We appreciate your device donations – these go a long way towards helping victims in need. Please call 866-290-7864 or email us to arrange for a FedEx shipping label and any packing materials you might need.
WHAT KIND OF DEVICES WILL YOU ACCEPT?
All devices that store digitally personally identifiable information or other forms of personal, private, and confidential information will be accepted. Personal electronics that we accept include (but are not limited to):
Cell phones, smartphones, and Blackberry from all carriers and manufacturers.
Laptop computers from all manufacturers.
Tablets from all manufacturers.
Cameras from all manufacturers.
Digital media players i.e. mp3, DVD, cd players, voice recorders, etc. from all manufacturers.
Portable video game systems from all manufacturers.
Smartwatches from all manufacturers.
Memory storage devices i.e. SD cards, external memory storage devices from all manufacturers.
Electronic accessories i.e. chargers, headsets, earphones, and rechargeable batteries from all manufacturers.
Desktop printers from all manufacturers.
Pin pad devices.
NOTE: We do not currently accept desktop CPUs and towers, however, you can send us the hard drive for secure data erasure.
I HAVE QUESTIONS – HOW CAN I FIND OUT MORE?
We are delighted to assist! Please send us an email or call 866-290-7864 for more information.
Since 2004 the 911 Cell Phone Bank has provided more than 150,000 devices to
vulnerable and needy residents in communities nationwide - all at no cost.
Over the years we have given emergency cell phones to victims of abuse and
senior citizens, tablets to women's shelters, laptops to law enforcement and
smartphones to teachers for use in high school app development courses.