How many people and companies have your phone number, if you have to guess? maybe a hundred? Think again.
Want to shock? Your mobile number and landline (if you still have one) will probably be posted online where you found mine – on a people search site that doesn’t cost a dime. Tap or click here for 4 websites that let you look up phone numbers.
By the way, if you find your phone number in location #1 on that list, Take these steps to remove it.
Your phone number can cause a lot of damage in the wrong hands. It’s an easy way for someone to connect you with a leaked password or even intercept your two-factor authentication codes. Tap or click for a more secure way to secure your accounts.
No matter how long you’ve had your phone number, it’s never too late to start treating it with caution. Here are some ways to do that.
Free and easy option from Google
Google Voice is a free service that gives you a phone number that you can use for just about anything. It works for local and international phone calls, texts and voice mail.
I first set up a Google Voice number when I listed a home for rent online. When this number was called, I knew what the call was concerned about.
It’s easy to have your own number right on your phone. All you need is a Google account to get started.
- Download the Google Voice app for iOS or Android.
- Open the app and sign in to your Google account.
- Review the privacy terms and click Acceptance or Complete moving forward.
- handle research To select a phone number from the list. You can search by city or area code.
- handle Choose next to the phone number you want.
- Check the number and Enter a phone number To link to your Voice account.
You will be given a six-digit code to enter for the next step. Enter And you’re done.
Now you can use your Google Voice number as you wish.
You can also use Google Voice to keep your old phone number if you’re switching to a new number. This is a smart move, given all the accounts and services associated with your number these days. Tap or click here for steps to do this.
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Or try a burner app
The duplicator app gives you a second phone number using internet data or Wi-Fi to make and receive calls and text messages. You can use this only for a short time – such as contacting someone selling an item you want to buy – or keep it for a long time.
Burner Number is great for online dating, shopping, web forms, social media, and more.
Burner is one of the most popular choices for iOS And Android. You can route calls directly to your secondary number. You can try it for free for 7 days. After that, plans start at $4.99 per month for a single line or $47.99 for a year.
silence for iOS And Android It allows you to generate numbers from all over the world, so you can checkout your area or US code if you wish. This is useful for traveling out of the country or obscuring where you live. You can access your Hushed number(s) anywhere Wi-Fi is available.
The prepaid plan starts at $1.99 for 7 days and comes with bundled minutes for local calls and texts. Unlimited calls and texts cost $3.99 per month and international service $4.99 per month.
This secret works in the question
There are times when using a physical phone number that you control is essential. But you probably just need something to fill out a form when creating an account online.
When in doubt, make a phone number. Most forms won’t let you scroll without entering 10 numbers, so go with 555-123-4567 or something similar. Remember, if this is an account that will use your number for authentication, or if it’s a company you want to hear from later, use your actual or copier number.
You can always use a pseudonym if the site allows you to sign up and sign up with an email address instead. Tap or click for an easy way to do this if you use Gmail. Go to number 5.
Bonus tip: 10 security terms you need to know right now
You cannot protect your privacy and security if you do not know the language. In this episode, Kim teaches you 10 important security terms you need to know and why they are important.
Listen to the podcast here or wherever you get your podcast. Just search for my family name, “Commando”.
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Learn about the latest technology on Kim Commando Show, the country’s largest weekend radio talk show. Kim takes calls and provides advice on today’s digital lifestyle, from smartphones and tablets to online privacy and data breaches. For her daily tips, free newsletters, and more, visit her website at Commando.