T-Mobile facing another SIM swapping charge

sim-swapping-incident

T-Mobile is facing another SIM swapping complaint. This time, the complaint comes from a Pennsylvania woman who lost $20,000 in cryptocurrency due to a mobile fraud scheme. And according to the complainant, T-Mobile was unable to protect her account.

Earlier this week, Sima Kesler filed a complaint in the Pennsylvania Eastern District Court. According to the complaint, Kesler was the victim of a SIM swapping scheme that took place in May 2020. 

Kesler complained that scammers were able to convince T-Mobile to give them control of the account. Once the account has been taken over, scammers can receive text messages and even access the victim’s accounts that have been linked to his mobile number. In the case of Kesler, thieves were able to deplete her Coinbase account, which had around $20,000 stored in it. 

In her complaint, Kesler alleged that her phone stopped working on May 2, 2020 around 8:00 pm. After an hour, she received an email notifying her that her Coinbase password had been changed. 

When Kesler filed her complaint, the $20,000 cryptocurrency she had in her account was worth over $65,000. 

T-Mobile has not yet responded to this complaint. However, this isn’t the first suit that T-Mobile is facing. Back in February, a Californian man also alleged that he was a victim of SIM swapping fraud and lost over $450,000 in cryptocurrency investments. The case is still ongoing to this day. 

 

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  • SlopeTangentAnswer

    How he gets back every dollar due to tmobile’s negligence.

    • dcmanryan

      I agree. I don’t see how T-Mobile wins either case and depending which crypto coin each victim had they could have potentially lost thousands more than they had at that time as many have soared in price since both cases happened. T-Mobile need to pull their head out.

    • Shaun Michalak

      I am not saying that T-Mobile is innocent here.. But it makes me wonder what people would say if it came out.. Yea, the victim gave out their personal info to a complete stranger, and that is what led to the breach.. It wasn’t a lack of security on T-Mobiles end, but more that the Victim gave all relevant info to the scammer, so they knew all info about it from the start.. I am not saying that this is what happened, but a more of a “what if” type of thing.. It also makes me wonder if that did happen, and the fault came down to the customer, just how fast people condemning them would either change their tune, or admit that they were wrong, or would they hide in a hole and pretend like it never happened and that all their judgemental comments were never said?? Just a thought..

  • Peter Truong

    I got sim swapped about 3 month ago. Lucky I already move my Crypto. T-mobile need to do something

    • marque2

      What exactly is it though? Isn’t the SIM securely in the phone, how can it be swapped? Is this a eSIM failing?

      • dcmanryan

        They call in and swap the number to a new sim card either esim or an actual sim card. They can then go on various sites and say they forgot the password and if your phone number is linked to that account they get the account unlocked by verifying the phone number and then changed the password on the crypto app or website and transferred the currency to their own wallet. In the old days verifying your number was a foolproof way against hackers but not anymore with sim swapping. T-Mobile always makes me verify when I call and there’s no getting out of it so I honestly question if this was an inside job. Either way T-Mobile failed and should pay dearly for it.

        I question how they got the account information and phone number to begin with and how they knew to go to coinbase within an hour of getting access to the phone line. This screams inside job or someone who knew the victim and the amount of money they bad in the account lucked out and got the village idiot who worked for T-Mobile to switch the sim.

        • marque2

          Ah because they almost always use your phone number for the two factor authentication – and to verify you for password resets.

          You are right though, Tmobile, has a sequence of checks as well. I know I have key with them, supposedly I can’t get service unless I verify myself – and if I can’t, they should have me go to a company store to check my ID and stuff. Though I can see that the pressure to be nice to the customer, and a customer always right attitude could get representatives to figure ways around the system so they don’t get bad service reviews.

        • Shaun Michalak

          You have it right on the nose here..,

          “I question how they got the account information and phone number to
          begin with and how they knew to go to coinbase within an hour of getting
          access to the phone line.”

          I find it hard to believe that the few people that have crypto are just found out of coincidence.. To be able to do this, you would first need to know that they have Crypto.. Then you would have to know their phone number.. Then you would have to know their personal info.. and so on.. These people just happen go guess all this info correct out of no where??

          I could be wrong, but it seems that part of the reason for the info getting out would come from the victim giving some info from the start.. and to the wrong people..

        • marque2

          It could be just trial and error, for every 100 phone swaps, one has a purse. Or maybe there are other things like credit card data they can grab as well, so they can get a few hundred bucks per phone, but if there is a coin purse, bonus. Once you get a number you just have people try a whole bunch of accounts.

        • Shaun Michalak

          The only problem with that comment is.. Well, if you are going to say you lost your phone, or it was stolen.. You will need your phone number, and the name on the account just to start. Not sure with T-mobile main customers, but with Metro, they also ask for your 8 digit pin.. Now if I do not give all 3, then know something is up.. So, how do they get all 3 without someone giving them to them.. That 8 digit pin could be anything. It is not like it is someones last 4 of their SS number or something.. and if you keep giving wrong numbers, then that is just going to scream “scam” or “theft”..

  • Mike Thaler

    Can someone define “SIM swapping” for me?

    • ruben

      is when your number is moved to the another sim card. Nad then they can use to to password reset with 2 factor authentication

  • Brian

    I don’t get how this happens. Every time I need to connect with Tmo for help, I have to go through multiple steps to get anything done.

  • paulmulwitz

    I don’t really understand this scam. However it seems to involve both T-Mobile and Coinbase. I would hope an FBI inquiry to Coinbase would discover the path the money took from the victim’s account to the scammer. Perhaps I am wrong but this seems to indicate users (like me) should limit the amount of money on account with Coinbase to the amount they are willing to lose.

  • Bodycount

    Sadly a lot of Tmobile store associates are in on the sim swap scheme. This is why I never go into a store anymore. I always do my business online or through 611.

  • Willie D

    TMo has nothing but security issues. From account data to SIM swaps.. they need to be heavily investigated, including every person who has worked in a store for the past 5 years (including Sprint). This happens so frequent I can’t help but think TMo is selling our information to bidders. From scam and phone calls that are non stop, account data stolen, etc, it’s very clear TMo has inside issues.

  • Joe Acerbic

    I wonder how exactly some Tmobile store associate would know whom to target for this scam. It’s quite a coincidence that these victims supposedly lost large amounts of kleptocurrency. It’s not like anybody ever lied about that sort of thing, amirite?

  • PaulNotBunyan

    Those who encourage two factor authentication via sms are the culprits. That would include my bank, my insurance company, some US government agencies and many others. Even without the sim swapping problem, it’s foolish to assume the average smartphone owner follows best practices for security. Most times when I help friends with android problems there is no pin or fingerprint needed to unlock the screen. They tell me just press this button.

    • Shaun Michalak

      It depends on who you are.. I have no screen protection on mine.. But do you know how much personal info I have attached to me phone.. Nothing.. Ziltch.. Nadda.. I give out a home phone if they ask for a number, and it is a landline.. I do not trust attaching anything to my cell.. Know how many times my phone has been hacked, or my phone number has been targeted?? None.. Simple solution..

  • Jessica Vianez

    I’m currently a victim T-Mobile let someone port my number out and with that they where able to hack my Robinhood and Coinbase account I’m currently still locked out of both accounts and have lost access to my money going on over a month now

    • Bklynman

      If I were you,I write real letter to both Robinhood and Coinbase by certify mail,
      telling them what happen,then take it from there.

  • bootsy333

    Exactly why T-Mobile needs to allow every phone that is capable of it use ESIM. Issues like this would be reduced significantly. Right now, its an exercise in frustration often to activate the ESIM, even if the phone supports it.

  • Jake Fitzpatrick

    I don’t really understand how this happens. When I call in, I am asked for my 8-digit PIN and not my SSN. You’d have to be me to know the PIN.

  • Mike

    Who can I reach out too as far as eone performing a simswap on me? This has been following me now for 3yrs and it’s doesn’t matter what wireless carrier I go through. It happened with cricket, as I purchased numerous Motorols, LGs, iPhone’s, it doesn’t matter.i can literally hear a third party on the line messing with my volume buttons, can hear them laughing, and they hang up on my calls after I had already been on the line explaining to them whats going on and as soon as I get transferred to overseas as usual, they laugh and drop my calls and I have to proceed by starting all over again. TMobile money for example, a digital bank account that anyone can join no matter carrier you have and the representative told me “I will Never be Qualified or Eligible to use that service.” And I’ve called and called and called and even went into numerous stores and I keep getting the same answer ” Sorry, but we have nothing to do with TMobile Money, and that I would have to call TMobile Money customer service.” And I get No real answer as to why I can’t sign up for a FREE SERVICE that is free for anyone and everyone to sign up for. Plz Help with this Sim Swap Fraud

  • steadymobb

    How are they getting people’s info to activate the new SIM? Usually you need password and last 4 of social

  • Terry Whitt

    I have no doubt there are security issues regarding T-Mobile. These security issues exist across the board when trying to verify someone’s identity. However, I have little sympathy for those dealing in crypto currencies, which, due to their secretive natures, have no means of tracing or otherwise dealing with improprieties on the crypto currency ends. The thefts have occurred on the crypto currency ends. In any other financial dealings, that is where investigation of any thefts would begin. There is no such thing as a completely secure electronic currency.

  • Pak T

    This coming from the company that FINALLY implements being able to use an authentication app but still give the hacker, errr, I mean “customer” the option to send an SMS instead when you log into your account. Pathetic.

  • Costa Vest

    It happened to me years ago. Someone ported my number to Metro PCS then used that to get into my email, bank accounts, etc. No crypto involved. I had a password already on my account- and there is no way they knew that. But all T-Mo did was “apologize” and get my number back a few days later after my accounts were already empty. They claimed I was a victim of identity theft so they knew all my info- ss#, dob etc to be able to initiate it from a Metro store.