Google Fi's new 'number lock' setting protects against SIM swaps

Google Fi Wireless has a new number lock feature that provides “an additional layer of protection against illegal SIM swapping.”

“SIM swapping occurs when someone steals your phone number by convincing your carrier to transfer your phone number to a SIM card they own. For example, someone might call your carrier, pretend to be you, and convince your carrier that you lost your phone and need to transfer your number to a new phone.”


When number lock is enabled, “You cannot transfer your number to a new device or carrier while this lock is active.”

To enable this feature, go to the Google Fi website ( and select the user (if you have more than one account as part of a group plan). Go to Phone Settings > Privacy & Security > Number Lock.

Tap “Sign in to manage number lock” and confirm your Google account credentials to enable the toggle.

If you want to “port your number to a new device or port to another carrier,” refer to this page, which is not available in the Android or iOS apps. Since the inconvenience is minimal, enabling number lock should be a good idea for most users.

Beyond this feature, porting a number off Google Fi is made more difficult by the current Google account protections, especially with two-factor authentication enabled, which requires you to log in and authenticate. However, the problem is a malicious actor targeting T-Mobile’s backend, which appears to have happened last year. It’s generally a good precaution to disable SMS-based two-factor authentication when possible.

to updateAccording to a new rule from the Federal Communications Commission, carriers must give customers “the option to lock or freeze their accounts to stop SIM card changes.” Number Lock is Google Fi’s answer to that requirement.

…Upon activation, wireless service providers must not honor SIM change requests until the customer deactivates the lock.

Federal Communications Commission

Telecom companies must also allow users to “lock or freeze their accounts to prevent data transfer.”

A phone porting scam occurs when a bad actor, posing as the victim, opens an account with a carrier other than the victim's current carrier. The bad actor then arranges for the victim's phone number to be transferred (or “ported”) to the account with the new carrier controlled by the bad actor.

Federal Communications Commission

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