Fraudulent mobile phone porting is the transfer of a mobile phone number between telecommunications providers without the account holders consent.
To switch between telecommunications companies they first complete an identification process which can include confirmation of personal information such as your mobile number, date of birth and address etc.
This process was designed for customers to easily switch between devices and providers. Unfortunately, criminals are gaining unauthorised control of mobile phones by accessing the answers from scams, information on social media and stolen mail.
An additional 6-digit Pre Port Verification (PPV) process was added as a fraud prevention method in 2020, but unfortunately if your phone has been compromised, the criminal may have access to the PPV code sent to your phone.
If a criminal is successful in porting your phone number they will have full access to your phone. This includes saved personal information, contacts, passwords and SMS authentication codes sent to your phone number for online banking, government and superannuation accounts etc.
Key warning signs that you phone is being ported.
- You may receive a 6-digit Pre Port Verification (PPV) code for transfer via SMS to your mobile number that you haven’t authorised.
- You may receive an SMS message informing you that your phone number is being ported to a different telecommunications provider.
- Your phone screen may go blank or black.
- Your phone may display SOS mode/ no phone reception.
You need to take action immediately if you suspect your phone number has been fraudulently transferred. Phone porting can occur in as little time as 15 minutes.
- Locate another phone you can use.
- Urgently contact your financial providers immediately to place a block on all transactions from your bank accounts and cards.
- Contact your current telecommunications provider.
- File a police report with the Australian Federal Police or the relevant State or Territory Police.
- Check your credit file for any unauthorised activity.
- Report the activity to IDCARE is Australia & New Zealand's national identity and cyber support service.
Proactive Fraud Prevention Steps You Can Take
- Install and maintain up to date virus protection software on all your telecommunication devices.
- Keep personal details private and off social media such as (your full name, date of birth and address).
- Ask your telecommunications provider if you can add a personalised password to your account/s.
Recently moved? Protect your mail by organising a redirect to your new address with Australia Post.