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SIM card theft: Discount provider, discount protection?

July 6, 2021 – Telus customers who were victims of SIM card scams are sounding the alarm on apparent flaws in the company’s security systems. An employee of its discount subsidiary Public Mobile even told a customer that the service she uses is “more at risk than others” because she pays less.

“If you pay for a discount service, we’re not going to invest as much in the system. You’re not going to invest millions when you have customers paying $5, $10 or $15 a month and it’s not profitable. At the end of the day, it’s a private company.“ This is a transcript of what a Telus representative in charge of customer data protection told Public Mobile customer Annie Montplaisir last March, a few days after Montplaisir’s phone was hacked.

The individual used a hacking technique called a SIM swap scam to gain control of Montplaisir’s phone. They then ordered $2,700 worth of clothing with the victim’s credit card, delivered to an address in Laval.

To prevent this type of fraud, many mobile network operators require customers to protect their SIM card with a four-digit password, which is required when a person wants to change their card. Other providers take it a step further: they text the customer’s phone before making any changes to the account to make sure the customer agrees. Toronto Star reports. | READ MORE