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Fido actually sold the phone number which someone recently used and I can see all his sensitive information

I'm a participant level 2
I'm a participant level 2

It has come to my attention that the phone number I have been using was previously associated with an individual named Craig. Over the past two years, I have consistently received calls and messages intended for Craig. This situation has been particularly unsecure and serious when using various applications such as Airbnb, where my phone number is linked to an existing account under Craig's name. To make matters worse, personal information, including credit card and PayPal details, is still associated with this account.

I find it deeply concerning that my number was assigned without proper disassociation from its previous user, especially given the sensitive nature of the information involved. This oversight has not only resulted in an invasion of my privacy but has also caused practical issues, as I am unable to create accounts on certain platforms due to the number's prior usage.

Upon contacting Fido customer service earlier today, I was assured that numbers previously used or recently active would not be resold. However, I must admit that I am greatly disappointed by the proposed solution – changing my phone number. The prospect of such a change is incredibly daunting, as it would require extensive adjustments and reconfiguration of numerous accounts and services that I have painstakingly set up over the past two years.



Senior MVP Senior MVP
Senior MVP

Hello Jeslulu,


Welcome to the community!


  The number of phone numbers is finite. From time to time, new overlays are created to expand the existing number allocation. However, with the number of users ever increasing, even those overlays fill are quickly exhausted. The practice of recycling numbers is commonplace and necessary. Generally, there is a minimum period where those cancelled phone numbers are not in circulation (see here). So the number you received from Fido wouldn't have been recently active like you suggest. Unfortunately, if the previous owner did not inform their contacts of the number change, there will be straggle callers and the number still associated with other services. It doesn't mean the phone number was still active.


   The oversight you note is that of the previous owner of the number, not the mobile providers. The mobile providers cannot possibly know what services a customer chooses to associate with their phone number. It is the customers' responsibility to notify their contacts and amend their information with their services.


  Unfortunately, some there are some instances where phone numbers have not been adequately dissociated with their former contacts and services during the inactive period. In the case of straggle callers, many people would just inform callers that the previous owner is no longer using that phone number. With other services such as PayPal, you would need to contact them to notify them that you are the new owner of that number. Alternatively, as already mentioned, you might consider changing your phone number. However, there is no guarantee the new phone number won't have a similar issue with its previous owner.


Hope this helps 😀