SIM swap is a genuine service which allows you to keep your existing phone number and change between different SIM sizes or phone providers.
It is also a technique which is becoming increasingly common amongst fraudsters as it can provide them with the ability to utilise your mobile phone number, benefiting from all the functionality and services that would provide, such as receiving and making phone calls, receiving and sending SMS messages as well as using any provisioned data allowance.
How could it affect you?
If a fraudster is in control of your phone number they are able to contact individuals at your cost or at least at a cost to your phone provider.
If you utilise services with any providers who confirm activity, provide security login information or confirm transactions, fraudsters may use SIM swap as a way to intercept these messages, resulting in financial loss.
What should you do?
SIM swaps will be conducted by your phone providers either via requests in their shops, on their websites or verbally via their call centres. Sometimes you will receive SMS messages or email prior to a SIM swap taking place and if you hadn't actioned this request you must contact your Bank/s and phone provider immediately.
A SIM swap completion will also result in your phone losing signal or becoming unable to make calls, send messages or use data.
This can sometimes happen if there are wider issues impacting your phone provider, however if you lose service in a location that is normally good, it is worth considering why that might be. If you have any concerns you should phone your telephone provider immediately to confirm whether a SIM swap has been undertaken, if it is confirmed you must phone your Bank/s, who may hold your mobile number as a contact for you.
If there is a risk to your account, your Bank will confirm the best way forward to protect you from any risk.