Brian Krebs wrote a good article on how our phone numbers have become security and authentication tools, and thus closely tied to our identity. But there’s a problem with that.
Phone numbers stink for security and authentication. They stink because most of us have so much invested in these digits that they’ve become de facto identities. At the same time, when you lose control over a phone number — maybe it’s hijacked by fraudsters, you got separated or divorced, or you were way late on your phone bill payments — whoever inherits that number can then be you in a lot of places online.
Check It Out: Your Phone Number Shouldn’t Be Your Identity
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“whoever inherits that number can then be you in a lot of places online.”
Today we solved a problem with my son’s new phone number. iMessages to him were going to a 3rd party, SMS texts went to his phone. His Apple ID/iCloud account had his old phone number, but when we went to change it to the new number we got an error alert that the number was already being used in a different account. The other parry wasn’t interested in deleting the number from his Apple ID account. My son called his carrier and got a newer new number and that solved the problem.