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For most people, our mobile devices contain a wealth of information. This can expose the user to various security risks, should the device be lost or stolen.
Here’s what you can do in the unfortunate case of your device or SIM card falling into the wrong hands.
Lock your SIM card
It is advisable that you first lock your line (SIM card) to mitigate against any excessive bills or fraudulent activities using your SIM card. There are two types of locking.
- Full admin locking or a hard lock is when your SIM card is locked for both incoming and outgoing calls. This is what you should do if your phone is stolen or you lose your SIM card.
- A soft lock of your SIM card results in only outgoing calls being barred, while still allowing incoming calls. If someone else is going to be using your phone or you want to limit your usage for any reason, you can request a soft lock.
To lock or unlock your SIM card, call Vodacom’s Customer Care on 082 135 for assistance, free from a Vodacom cellphone (normal rates apply if calling from another mobile operator’s number or landline).
Blacklist your device
To further mitigate against excessive bills or fraudulent activities, blacklist your device. Blacklisting will prevent your device from connecting to all networks so that no calls can be made or received from it even if used with a new or different SIM card. This may also be required for insurance purposes and in order to obtain an ITC reference number.
To blacklist a lost or stolen phone:
- Call Vodacom’s Customer Care on 082 135, free from a Vodacom cellphone. (Normal rates apply if calling from another cellphone or landline.)
- Request the customer care agent to provide you with the ITC reference number (where required).
- Report the lost or stolen device to the South African Police Service (SAPS) and ensure the ITC reference number is provided at the stage of reporting.
If you find your missing device after blacklisting it, you may need to un-blacklist it. To un-blacklist your device:
- Call Vodacom’s Customer Care on 082 135, free from a Vodacom cellphone. (Normal rates apply if calling from another mobile operator’s number or landline.)
- You will need to complete a request form for un-blacklisting (tick the un-blacklisting box on the form) and email it to firstname.lastname@example.org with a copy of your identity document.
- The device must be kept off for 24 hours after un-blacklisting, to enable the un-blacklisting of the device on the switches and back end.
You can check whether your device is still blacklisted by trying to make or receive a call. A blacklisted phone can make calls to the 112 emergency services only.
To find out more about blacklisting and SIM locking as well as other security issues, visit Vodacom’s Help and Support page.