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When I asked how the store authenticated the thief, he told me that employees of stores owned by the mobile carrier would have asked for the account holder’s photo ID and the last four digits of their social security number, but if the theft occurred at another retailer, that might not have happened.I logged in to my online account, changed the password, and added an extra security PIN recommended by the fraud department.Traditionally a phone number was a pretty static thing, we’re just not use to phone numbers being as disposable as email addresses, and I think that has to change for a lot of us." Beck added, "I suspect we’ll see a new service offering going forward, services that identify burner number pools and providers that are used for burner numbers." Until then, it's caller -- and receiver -- beware when it comes to burner numbers.A few weeks ago an unknown person walked into a mobile phone store, claimed to be me, asked to upgrade my mobile phones, and walked out with two brand new i Phones assigned to my telephone numbers.My phones immediately stopped receiving calls, and I was left with a large bill and the anxiety and fear of financial injury that spring from identity theft.
Burner (the app) is especially careful about deep-sixing their users' numbers.Read More Beck doesn't think it's good form to name the company engaging in these shady practices.He told ZDNet, "There are a number of apps like this for i OS and Android, with more appearing every month, some of the more well-known ones are: Burner, Hushed, Lineup, and YOONumbers." He wants his experience to be a warning to anyone thinking that "burner" phone number apps expire your number immediately -- or don't recycle them.this would have been something the needed to be set up and agreed upon with the previous user of the phone number." Beck seems to think that protecting ourselves from scenarios like this means a shift in the way we think of phone numbers.
"We need to treat phone numbers as untrusted resources that gain trust with us over time as they’re used regularly by the same people to communicate with us – I think that’s where the biggest issues are, in perception of what a phone number is when it’s provided to us.
I called my mobile carrier’s fraud department and reported what happened.