Phone Number

How a Scammer Can Use Your Cell Phone Number

Some people may not be very careful in safeguarding their cell phone numbers. They may think that there is not really that much a thief could do simply by having someone else’s number. But, unfortunately, a scammer can do a lot of damage if they learn your cell phone number. So, it’s best to be very careful to whom you give it to.

If a scammer does get a hold of your cell phone number, they can:

Reroute Your Number

The scammer can get in touch with your mobile carrier and claim to be you. They can then route your number to their phone. Once this is done, the scammer will log into your email. They can use the password reset to obtain a new password and have the reset link sent to their phone because it now uses the phone number from your phone. After they obtain access to your email, they will be able to access a lot more of your accounts. Some mobile service providers have security features in place to try to prevent this. But, if a scammer has your phone, they may be able to learn enough about you to answer security questions.

Access Your Personal Data

If a scammer gets your phone number, it’s easy to get at least some personal information about you by simply typing it into one of the many people search sites, such as Fast People Search or WhoEasy. Scammers can find some information about you very quickly on one of these sites and then sell it. They may even sell the information to hackers.

Spoof Your Number

Another way a scammer can use your number is to have your number show up on someone’s caller ID when it is not you calling. This technique can make it easier to scam people. Scammers hope that by using numbers that are similar to the numbers a person normally calls or that have a local area code, the person will be more likely to answer the call. Once the person answers the call, the scammer has an opportunity to try and trick the person into giving out their credit card information. Or, they may only try to get the person to say “yes” or “no” and record these words to use as part of a scam.

Texting Scam

In this scam, a scammer will send harmful text messages to your phone number. These texts will contain links that could steal your private information or impersonate your doctor, bank, or someone else you may trust and then try to obtain personal or financial information. The text may also contain malware.

Final Thoughts

Giving out your cell phone number can cause a lot more problems than annoying sales calls. So, avoid giving out your cell phone number, and if you do give it out, try to do so in a private area. The fewer people that know your cell phone number, the better.

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