Is it Safe to Give Your Phone Number Out?

As more and more people use their smartphones to communicate, the question of whether it’s safe to give out your phone number has become increasingly important. Whether you’re giving your number to a new acquaintance, a business contact, or an online service provider, it’s important to understand the risks and take steps to protect yourself.

At the heart of the issue is the fact that your phone number is often tied to a lot of personal information, including your name, address, and even your social media profiles. In the wrong hands, this information can be used for a wide range of malicious purposes, from identity theft to harassment.

So, is it safe to give your number out? The answer, as with many things in life, is “it depends.” In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the risks and benefits of giving out your phone number, as well as some strategies for protecting yourself.

How Can People Obtain Your Phone Number?

There are several ways in which a person can obtain your phone number. Here are some of the most common methods:

  • Social media: If you have your phone number listed on your social media profile, it can be easily accessed by anyone who views your profile. Additionally, if you have public posts or comments that include your phone number, it can be picked up by search engines and other online tools.
  • Business cards: If you give out business cards that include your phone number, anyone who receives the card will have access to your phone number.
  • Contact lists: If someone already has your email address or is connected to you on social media, they may be able to access your phone number if it is included in your contact list.
  • Public records: In some cases, your phone number may be included in public records, such as voter registration records or property ownership records. This information can be accessed by anyone who knows how to search for it.
  • Online directories: There are many online directories that compile phone numbers and other personal information. Some of these directories are free, while others require payment. Examples of these directories include Whitepages, Spokeo, and Intelius.
how can people get your number

Is it Safe to Give Your Phone Number Out? The Risks of Giving Out Your Number

You are probably wondering what someone can do if they know your phone number and What can a scammer do with my phone number and address. Well, it’s important to be aware of the potential risks associated with giving out your phone number, not just for the sake of protecting yourself from hackers, but also from everyday people who may use your number to harm you. Here are some ways in which your phone number could be used to harm you by normal people and hackers as well:

  • Spam calls and messages: By giving out your phone number, you open yourself up to receiving unsolicited calls and messages from telemarketers, scammers, and other individuals who want to sell you something or scam you out of your money. Not only is this annoying and time-consuming, but it can also put you at risk of falling for a fraudulent scheme.
  • Stalking and harassment: If you give your phone number to someone who becomes obsessed with you, they could use it to track your whereabouts, harass you with unwanted calls and messages, or even threaten you with violence. This can be a terrifying experience and can put your safety at risk.
  • Identity theft: Your phone number can be used by identity thieves to gain access to your personal information, such as your name, address, and Social Security number. They can then use this information to open credit accounts in your name or make fraudulent purchases, which can seriously damage your credit score and financial well-being.
  • Hacking and phishing: Hackers can use your phone number to gain access to your online accounts by tricking you into giving them sensitive information or by using your number to reset your passwords. This can give them access to your emails, social media profiles, and other sensitive information like your credit card information and address.
  • Location tracking: Your phone number can be used to track your location through your phone’s GPS, which can be a major privacy concern. If someone knows your phone number, they can use certain apps or services to monitor your movements, which can put you at risk of physical harm.
  • Scams and fraud: There are a number of phone-based scams and frauds out there, from fake IRS calls to “tech support” scams. If you’re not careful, giving out your phone number could make you a target for these types of scams.

It is unlikely that someone can obtain your personal information such as your credit card details or address just by knowing your phone number. However, if a scammer or hacker has access to other personal information about you, they may be able to use that information to obtain more details.

For example, if a scammer has your phone number and your email address, they can use your email address to attempt to gain access to your online accounts, such as your bank account or credit card account. They can also use your phone number to conduct a phishing scam by sending you a text message with a link that leads to a fake website where you are asked to enter your personal information, including credit card details.

Real Examples 

If you are wondering is it safe to give your number out? Here are some real examples of incidents mentioned in the media where people’s phone numbers were obtained and misused:

  • In 2020, Twitter account hijacking, hackers obtained sensitive data using only a phone number. In July of that year, a group of hackers gained access to the Twitter accounts of several high-profile individuals and companies, including Barack Obama, Elon Musk, and Apple, and used them to promote a Bitcoin scam. The hackers were able to access the Twitter accounts by using a technique called SIM swapping. They convinced Twitter employees to reset the email addresses associated with the targeted accounts, and then used SIM swapping to take control of the phone numbers associated with those email addresses. With control of the phone numbers, the hackers were able to bypass two-factor authentication and gain access to the Twitter accounts. Once they had access to the Twitter accounts, the hackers used them to post tweets promoting a Bitcoin scam. The tweets contained links to a fraudulent website where people were encouraged to send Bitcoin to an address in order to receive double the amount back. The hackers were able to make off with over $100,000 in Bitcoin before the scam was discovered and the accounts were shut down.


  • In 2019, a man was arrested in Japan for using a mobile app to obtain the phone numbers of over 7,000 women and sending them unsolicited messages. He was charged with violating the country’s anti-stalking laws. Source
  • In 2020, Facebook Dark Web Deal, where hackers sold 267 Million user profiles for $540 only, data stolen included, email addresses, names, Facebook IDs, dates of birth and phone numbers. All of which was a perfect set of data with which to craft a text or email phishing campaign on behalf of Facebook.


These examples show that obtaining someone’s phone number can lead to serious consequences if it falls into the wrong hands.

How To Avoid The Risks Of Giving Your Phone Number?

Protecting your personal information, including your phone number, is essential to keeping your data safe. Here are some ways you can avoid the risks associated with sharing your phone number:

  • Be cautious of who you give your number to: Only give out your phone number to trusted sources. Avoid giving your phone number to unknown individuals or unverified websites. and if you are wondering what to do when a stranger asks for your number? you can just reject their request or give them a second phone number.
  • Use a second phone number: Consider using a second phone number for online transactions, such as when signing up for a new service or making a purchase. This can help protect your personal phone number from falling into the wrong hands.
  • Enable two-factor authentication: Enabling two-factor authentication on your accounts can help protect your phone number from being used to gain unauthorized access to your accounts. With two-factor authentication, even if someone has your phone number, they would still need the verification code sent to your phone in order to access your accounts. This provides an extra layer of security and makes it more difficult for someone to use your phone number to access your accounts. For example, if someone tries to log in to your email account using your phone number, they would need to enter the verification code sent to your phone in order to complete the login process. Without the code, they would not be able to access your account. This means that even if someone has your phone number, they would not be able to access your email account without also having access to your phone.
  • Keep your phone software updated: Keeping your phone’s software updated can help protect your phone from vulnerabilities that could potentially be exploited by attackers to gain access to your personal information, including your phone number. As security threats and vulnerabilities are discovered, phone manufacturers and software providers release updates that address these issues and patch security holes. By installing these updates, you can ensure that your phone has the latest security features and patches that can help protect your phone number and personal information. Additionally, some updates may also introduce new security features that can further enhance your phone’s security, such as improved encryption and stronger password requirements.
  • Use a VPN: A Virtual Private Network (VPN) can encrypt your internet traffic and protect your online privacy. Consider using a VPN when browsing the internet or using public Wi-Fi. 


As for using a second phone number, you can use apps such as Numero eSIM to create a secondary phone number for online transactions or for situations where you do not want to give out your personal phone number. You can download Numero app onto your phone and use it to make calls, send texts, and receive voicemails using a separate number. This can help protect your personal phone number from being exposed to potential risks. Numero provides virtual phone numbers from 80+ countries around the world. These numbers can be used for business and private use. US numbers from Numero can be used to activate social media platforms and online web accounts securely.

To Sum Up

While there are potential risks associated with sharing your phone number, it is generally safe to give out your number if you take proper precautions. By following the tips mentioned in this article, such as being cautious about who you share your number with, using second phone numbers, and other precautions, you can help protect your personal information and minimize the risks of giving out your phone number. By being mindful and taking the necessary precautions, you can still enjoy the convenience of sharing your phone number without putting yourself at unnecessary risk.

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Other Resources: News/ Blog/ Tutorials
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