Recently one of our developers came across this article on Vice: “A Hacker Got All My Texts for $16”. In this piece, a journalist hires a hacker to show him just how easy it is to manipulate and re-route someone’s personal phone number using SMS authentication and phony user authorizations.
If this ever happens to you, your phone will seem completely normal — at least until your apps stop working. Or even worse, you’ll stop receiving text messages from friends and family because a hacker is having all your messages redirected!
Can you avoid having this happen to you? Of course you can! The only way a hacker can initiate this re-routing process is if he or she knows your personal phone number to begin with. It’s an easy fix to make sure you NEVER give out your cell phone number to any person or company you don’t trust.
But what if you want to keep using all your apps? We use apps for so much of our daily lives now: from ride-sharing and grocery delivery to banking and online-dating, apps are a critical part of today’s world.
Luckily you have us: atTextverified and Phoneblur, you’ve got two simple ways to protect your private phone number. You can rent one of our US-based cell phone numbers on a short-term or a long-term rental plan and avoid giving out your personal number altogether.
Instead, use one of our numbers any time you need to register for an app or authenticate an account. And if that number gets hacked, all you have to do is switch to a new number.* Stay safe and happy verifying!
*But we’d love it if you drop us a line and let us know one of our numbers has been compromised! 🙂
Hello Textverified users! We’ve recently launched some exciting new updates and wanted to tell you about them:
Textverified Search Bar — We’ve made some improvements to our search bar on the “Text & SMS” Verifications page. Now if you’re looking for a specific service, you can find it directly by using our “Short-term / temporary numbers” search bar. (Please note that you are no longer able to search the full verifications page via “ctrl + f”)
“Connected” Status Bar — You may have noticed a new status bar on the upper-right side of our site. This status bar will read “connected” and display a flashing green dot when your account is active and able to purchase verification services. If you are experiencing any errors using our site, check to be sure that you’re “connected” first. If you’re not connected, reload the page, or try logging out of your account and re-connecting.
Desktop Browsers — Textverified works best on the latest versions of all desktop web browsers. If you are using an outdated web browser, you may not be able to access your account or make purchases properly.
Here are some links with information on how to access the most current versions of several popular desktop web browsers:
At Textverified and Phoneblur, we’re all about protecting your privacy and personal data. If keeping your private phone number secure is your number one priority, then you’ve come to the right place.
Buying and selling items online is super easy when you’re shipping out a package or receiving one in the mail. But what if your transaction is happening offline?
Services like Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace have been popular for years. Now that many people are working from home, it is easier than ever to find the time to arrange an in-person exchange. But new stories come out every week about buying and selling encounters gone wrong.
If you’re using a site like Craigslist, where users exchange emails and phone numbers to arrange a meeting, protect yourself first! Use one of our numbers to set-up an email account that you ONLY use for these types of transactions.
If you rent a multi-purpose line on Phoneblur, you can also give out your temporary number to sellers or prospective buyers. Then when you meet-up with a stranger for an exchange, you can reach them via call or text without ever giving out your real phone number.
Are you using a site like Facebook Marketplace instead? This would be a great time to create a separate profile that you ONLY use for buying and selling. You can then use an SMS verification on Textverified to verify that new Facebook account. Then all your Marketplace transactions can be conducted through one Facebook account that is not linked to your main account.
At Textverified and Phoneblur, we care about protecting your privacy — let us help you stay safe!
One of the most popular uses for phone number rental services is dating apps. Dating apps, like Tinder or Hinge, are a great way to test out our long-term rental services.
It’s good to be cautious when connecting with new people online. Although none of these apps will display your phone number to random users, you might decide you want to share your direct phone number with someone who seems promising.
Before matching with anyone, simply reserve a long-term multi-purpose line through our partner site, Phoneblur. You will then receive an exclusive number that you can use to sign up for accounts with any of the major dating apps.
Then, when you’ve started chatting with someone you like, you can give that person your rented number. They can text you, but they won’t know it’s not your primary phone number until you’re ready to take that step.
Phoneblur will show you every text received by your rented number and even lets you text people back with the free Sending SMS Add On. And to keep things extra convenient, you can have texts and calls sent directly to your primary phone number by purchasing the SMS and Call Forwarding Add Ons.
A long-term rental is also a good solution to online harassment. We know not everyone who uses dating apps will have the best intentions. If you’ve given someone your long-term rental number and they start messaging you aggressively or harassing you, blocking them is as easy as changing your rental number.
That person might still have your number, but they’ll never realize it was just a rental anyway!
In 2021, it’s more important than ever to take necessary precautions when dating online. With the current global pandemic, it’s crucial to vet people over the phone before meeting in person. When you use a long-term rental phone number to text and call your online matches, you’re keeping yourself extra protected! Happy swiping!
Many of our users have been wondering about different uses for rental numbers. Today we’ll talk about ride share services specifically.
Have you ever used Uber, Lyft, or even a ride share app for a traditional taxi company? Each of these services requires an active phone number before you can request a ride.
But if you use your personal phone number to register for a ride share app, then any driver who accepts your ride request will be able to see your number. With that information, your driver could contact you long after you’ve taken that one ride!
Additionally, many people use ride share services to go home after an event or a night out. Between picking you up and dropping you off, both the ride share app and your driver will have access to your home address and your cell phone number. Identity theft is a real concern these days, so why would you want anyone to know more of your personal data than he or she needs to?
This is where Phoneblur comes in: if you use an anonymous number rental for your ride share services, both the app and your driver won’t know your personal number. You can still rely on all your usual services, but now you’ll have peace of mind knowing that your real phone number is secure. And when you put less personal information out there, it’s harder for identity thieves to target you. Happy verifying!
So you’re stuffed full of turkey and you’ve polished off that last slice of pecan pie. Now what?
It’s time to shop! But before you get to those Black Friday deals, how about renting a phone number on Textverified?
These days, many stores and merchants are asking for your phone number as part of the checkout process. But do you really want to give it to them?
Keeping your phone number private will decrease the number of spam messages you get. And if no one has your number, then your data can’t be sold to a third party either.
Some sites will also offer discounts when you register an account with your phone number. Use one of the rental numbers on Phoneblur and you won’t have to worry about sharing your information, but you’ll still get your discount.
This Black Friday, choose a temporary number from Textverified — you can shop ’til you drop and keep your data safe!
Remember this screenshot from yesterday? This is your purchase order with Textverified.
Now we need to pay it! There are two convenient ways to send us your Bitcoin, i.e. pay your balance. First we’ll show you how to pay via mobile device only and then we’ll cover QR codes in a separate post.
See that long string of letters and numbers? That is theTextverified wallet address for your transaction. When using secure digital currency exchanges, this wallet address will be different each time you complete a transaction (for more information, check out this article on wallet addresses over at Coinbase).
Open your digital currency exchange app or navigate to their site from your web browser. You should see a screen that looks something like this one, from Coinbase:
Since we’ve already activated the “sending” function, click the “Send” button, which will take us to this page:
The amount of Bitcoin you own is still represented in USD (or your local currency). That means the $8.98 above refers to how much Bitcoin we own in USD. Below it, you can see that we own about 0.00057 BTC, or Bitcoin.
First, and this is an important step if you’re using multiple cryptocurrencies from a single wallet, make sure to select “BTC Wallet” so you’re paying in Bitcoin.
Next, using the number keypad, enter the amount of Bitcoin listed on your Textverifiedpayment invoice. In this case, it is 0.000479 BTC. Then press “Continue.”
Due to security protocols, we aren’t able to take screenshots of the next screen, but it works as follows: You will now be prompted to enter a wallet address. This is where you’ll copy and paste the Textverifiedwallet address from your purchase order.
This wallet address lets your digital currency exchange provider know where to send your payment, so it’s important that you enter the whole address correctly. There should also be a spot for transaction notes where you can add in your Textverified “Order No.” to help keep track of your payments.
Your provider will then ask you to “Confirm” the wallet address you’ve entered. Once you do that, you’ll see a receipt for your transaction:
The amount you send will appear slightly higher than what you actually owe Textverified because every digital currency exchange will charge a small fee to process your transaction.
In this example, we owe 0.000479 BTC to Textverified, but we actually paid 0.000536 BTC, which includes the Coinbase processing fee. You can see below that the actual amount we paid in USD is $8.42.
After a few minutes, you’ll receive an email from Coinbase confirming your transaction. This email will also display the transaction fee amount you paid in USD (or your local currency) — $0.86 in our example below.
Soon after that, you’ll also receive an email from Textverified letting you know that you’ve successfully added credits to your account. Happy verifiying!
Yesterday we talked about opening a wallet on a digital currency exchange, like Coinbase. Then we used a debit account to add Bitcoin to your wallet.
Today we’re moving to the big leagues: activating the sending feature on your wallet and making a purchaseorder on Textverified — and tomorrow we’ll talk about how to pay for your purchaseorder after you’ve received your payment invoice.
Starting at your digital currency exchange provider, first you’ll need to verify your identity. Before allowing you to enter a payment method, Coinbase, and any other digital currency exchange, will ask you to verify your identity. This step involves uploading a photo of government-issued ID — generally a Driver’s License or a State ID works fine.
Be patient — it may take some time for your cryptocurrency service provider to verify your identity. You should be ready to go in a couple hours at most.
Now we’ll navigate over to Textverified to make a purchase. Remember, when you make a purchase on Textverified, you’re NOT purchasing a rental number right away — what you’re doing is adding credits to your Textverified account so that you CAN pay for future number rentals from this balance.
Log-in to your account and click “Buy” in the navigation bar. You’ll be taken to a purchasing page that looks like this:
Use the slider bar to select the amount of cryptocurrency you’d like to purchase, or enter it in the box below and click the “Buy” button. You’ll then be directed to this page:
This is where you’ll choose your cryptocurrency payment type. In all of our examples, we’re using Bitcoin, but support will be restored soon for Litecoin and Ethereum.
In the screenshot above, we are purchasing $7.50 USD worth of Bitcoin to add to our Textverified account. To keep things simple, the purchase amount will always appear in USD or your own local currency.
Click “Continue” and then you’ll see a page that looks like this:
This is your payment invoice for your purchase — it is NOT a purchase yet. A payment invoice indicates to us that you wish to make a payment.
At the top, you’ll see an Order Number for this specific transaction. Then you’ll see the current amount you owe in Bitcoin. The amount you entered in USD (or your local currency) on the previous pages has been converted to Bitcoin. That Bitcoin amount is what you’ll need to pay in order to add to your balance on Textverified.
Please keep in mind that a conversion rate like the one displayed above is ONLY active for 15 minutes, so that’s why we list a “Payment Window” at the bottom of your screen.*
So you’ve activated the sending feature in your wallet and you’ve placed an order on Textverified. Then you received a payment invoice from us.
Now you know exactly what you owe, but you still need to actually pay this balance, all in 15 minutes or less — but don’t panic! This next step is pretty easy and we’ll explain it all tomorrow in “Crypto 103: Paying for a Purchase Order with Bitcoin.”
* Wondering what’s up with that 15-minute time limit on your Textverified order? The value of Bitcoin, like any traditional currency, fluctuates throughout the day. To keep our rate conversions as up-to-date as possible, you’ll need to request a new transaction if you’ve haven’t paid this amount within the 15-minute timeframe. Don’t worry, there are NO penalties for missing the 15-minute window — it’s only there to ensure you get the most current conversion rate for your cryptocurrency.