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How to get your number back from a lost phone

Has your phone gone missing recently? Could anybody else gain access to it? And is it possible to keep your number if the device has been compromised?

As well as knowing what to do if your phone is lost or stolen, you should act quickly to retain your number. This helps reduce the risk of identity fraud and saves you updating your various accounts with brand new contact details.

If you've lost your SIM / phone and want to keep your number, we can help. In this article, we’ll explain how to get your number back from a lost phone and suggest ways of safeguarding your personal information against potential theft.

What to do if your mobile phone goes missing

First things first, report your device as missing straight away to your network provider. They will block it to stop any unauthorised use. 

If you don’t inform the network immediately, your charges could skyrocket, as you would still be liable.

You should then ask the network for your phone’s identification number (IMEI), which must be given to the police if you suspect the device has been stolen.

Most networks can reactivate your phone if it turns up again.


Keeping your mobile number

On most occasions, you can keep your mobile number even if you’ve reported a phone missing. You should let your network know and they’ll send you a replacement SIM with the existing number; all you have to do is insert it into a new handset. Keep in mind that your old SIM will be deactivated, so if you do happen to find it again you still won’t be able to use it. 

If for some reason the number can’t be preserved, your network will let you know.


What if your phone goes missing abroad?

The same procedure applies. First, contact your network provider, and let them know if you’re using any SIM cards for overseas travel

Then, if you suspect your device has been stolen, report the incident to the local authorities.

If you have travel insurance for your mobile, you can make a claim whilst overseas.


Protecting your mobile phone

When it comes to smartphone security, you can never be too careful. That’s why implementing safeguards on your mobile phone takes precedence from the moment you buy it.

Start by choosing a strong password that isn’t easily guessable. Next, remember to switch on ‘Find My Device’ or ‘Find My iPhone’; both will allow you to track the whereabouts of your phone if it goes missing.

Of course, if your phone is irretrievable, you may have to securely wipe your phone so sensitive information doesn’t fall into the wrong hands. It won’t affect your phone number at all; however, this should only be implemented as a last resort (you mustn’t act rashly and lose precious data over a handset you’ve probably misplaced around the house). 


Insurance for your devices

As an extra precaution, you may wish to take out insurance for your mobile phone. This is especially handy if you use the device a lot and want to minimise both the cost and inconvenience in the event of something bad happening.

When going abroad, you should always take out travel insurance for gadgets that covers all your electronics.

If your phone is lost, damaged or stolen, either at home or abroad, be sure to contact your insurance provider as soon as you’ve reported the incident to your network and the police.

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