How are registration cell phone numbers

Receive confirmation SMS without your own mobile phone number on the Internet

Example of an SMS receiving service on the Internet
Screenshot: teltarif.de / Alexander Kuch "Verify your account by entering your mobile phone number" - that is now often a greeting when you set up a user account on the Internet. E-mail providers, online shops, messengers, banks and other service providers promise their customers greater security and easier restoration of the customer account if the password is lost. But not everyone wants to give their private cell phone number for this.

Example of an SMS receiving service on the Internet
Screenshot: teltarif.de / Alexander Kuch want to remedy this by SMS reception services on the Internet. The use of such services is usually financed by advertising and the private cell phone number remains secret. But the user must be aware that the messages sent are publicly visible.

What are SMS reception services suitable for?

The SMS reception services are available on the Internet, for example, at vsimcard.com, receive-sms-online.com or smsonlineempfangen.com. The user does not receive any advertising and he does not have to leave any personal data on the page, but the pages contain banner advertising.

The site operators usually have a large arsenal of SIM cards and mobile phone numbers, usually for many countries and sometimes even several phone numbers per country. The system is very simple: if you need a mobile phone number to register a service, you enter the number of the SMS receiving service. If the SMS arrives there, the operator posts it in a publicly visible manner on his website.

This system can be used, for example, when registering e-mail addresses for shopping trips or newsletter registrations, because many freemail providers now rely on authentication of their users via SMS. If the confirmation code is sent to the SMS receiving service, it can be entered directly when registering the freemailer's mailbox. Although there are few known cases of freemailing with private cell phone numbers, one's own phone number does not have to be given out in this way.

Such SMS reception services can also be useful on vacation trips because they can be used to register for a service in the vacation destination without having to purchase a SIM for the travel destination.

What are the services unsuitable for and what are the dangers?

The user of such services must be aware that the confirmation SMS will be published in plain text on the Internet. The SMS should therefore never contain personal data. Unfortunately, when registering for a new service, the user does not know beforehand which information the service provider is putting into the SMS.

SMS like "Your Google verificationcode is 675429" or "Verification code for the Microsoft account: 7419" can be clearly assigned to a provider, but not to a user. If you look at the received SMS on the aforementioned pages, you will find confirmation SMS for hotspot use at the train station, codes for messenger registrations or TAN confirmations for ringtone subscriptions and file sharing platforms. But we also noticed confirmation SMS in which a GMX email address was sent in plain text. And what is even more dangerous: Unsolicited customers seem to actually use such services for TAN delivery in online banking or for registering a bank account. In one case, the text message contained the user's prefix and name as well as the IBAN, BIC and name of the bank.

It is also dangerous if a link is sent in the confirmation SMS. If you enter this in the web browser, it is often converted into another URL that contains personal data. In this way we were able to find out, for example, the name of a user who carried out a Postident procedure.

Since you can never really be sure which data is sent in the SMS, it is not advisable to use such services. In Germany there are many ways to get free prepaid SIM cards without a contract, in some cases even with an advertising-financed mobile data volume. We have mentioned some of these offers in our extensive guide to free SIMs, tariff deals and promotions.