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Author Topic: What do bitcoin ATMs do with your phone number?  (Read 151 times)
yat97
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June 08, 2021, 04:26:01 AM
 #1

Are they legally required to ask for your number or do they want it for themselves?

Are there any free online numbers that will work?
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June 08, 2021, 05:54:17 AM
 #2

You are legally required to give your actual information when performing AML/KYC. I believe when you submit these things you even have to check a box saying you declare it all to be truthful information. Give a fake phone number at your own risk.

If you don't want to do all these things why not buy online where kyc isn't required?

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June 08, 2021, 08:03:00 AM
 #3

I haven't used one but I think it's part of verification that will be sent to you and to confirm as the buyer. If they're asking it for your number, it's better to contact the owner of that Bitcoin ATM and ask them why they're requiring you with that.

Are there any free online numbers that will work?
There are many online but usually they're crowded with usage so you'll find it hard to use one if it's going to send a verification on that number. I think using your phone number with transactions are fine if it's sending you TXID for that Bitcoin ATM.

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June 08, 2021, 08:33:36 AM
 #4

Are they legally required to ask for your number or do they want it for themselves?

From what I know the phone number is used for communication, for example to tell when you can withdraw your money.
From what I've read, you may receive a code on your phone number and you'll use that code to do the withdrawal.
Of course, they may use it also for tracking you for tax purpose, especially in the case of large amounts (in one or more transactions over the year), but usually it's not the case (then they ask more extensive KYC info)

Are there any free online numbers that will work?

I don't know, but I wouldn't advise; you don't know who else may be able to get his hands on your money.

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June 08, 2021, 02:57:48 PM
 #5

Are they legally required to ask for your number or do they want it for themselves?
There are too many brands of Bitcoin ATM Machines out there and each of them has different policies and it depends on where they are located at.  I think not all of them are required to have a phone number or even ID verification.  They required a phone because of the SMS verification and I think there's no way to bypass that.  Not unless if you're using a third-party person to get a code upon your purchasing.

Quote
Are there any free online numbers that will work?
I don't know this but I saw somewhere else that he can do a bunch of SMS verifications in a different country but I don't know if that service is safe. 
My advice is, buy a cheap phone that has a Simcard for that purpose.

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June 08, 2021, 05:12:01 PM
 #6

It's not recommended to use a 3rd party or SMS provider it's risky.

Phone verification is need for their KYC process before you can able to deposit and buy bitcoin. If you are living in UK or EU I think most of the BTC ATMs there require phone numbers but I don't know in the US but try to look to another BTC ATM because I heard there are some BTC ATMs that don't need a phone number for verification or ID verification.

Use this coinatmradar.com then check the details of the Bitcoin ATM near you and it will show if it needs SMS verification and ID verification or not.

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June 08, 2021, 05:24:11 PM
 #7

In many cases, the reason is to verify the location of the account owner as many VOIP services do not give the ability to receive voice calls or even send and receive many messages, as it is important to track the user faster.

The phone is a good database for communicating with users and a kind of protection for them (I do not recommend using it)

In general, it is considered a minimum level check and is demanded by many governments for those who want to transfer amounts less than 3000 dollars.

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June 08, 2021, 05:25:29 PM
Last edit: June 08, 2021, 05:42:33 PM by LeGaulois
 #8

Normally, you can not use the free numbers that can be found online to receive SMS, so forget this suggestion given.

Not to mention that some ATMs send you the SMS containing the transaction détails and private key. So imagine everyone having access to it...
You may need to provide your birth date with the code received by SMS and since you'll be using someone else number, it won't match.

You also can't use Viber, textnow, and similar apps. Their system detects and refuses such phone numbers. It can work with some but it depends on the manufacturer and you can't really know that in advance...

And yes, asking for your phone number is a legal obligation to control the money laundering risk.

Get a paid SIM, or at least dedicated to you. You get one for free with lycamobile

.

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June 08, 2021, 10:51:05 PM
 #9

Give a fake phone number at your own risk.
Well, when they ask you for a phone number it's because you have to enter a code into the ATM from an SMS text they send you.  As to why they need to do that, I have no idea because that's not KYC.  It's easy enough to either use a burner phone or get someone to receive the SMS for you, so they're not getting any reliable identity info from you that way. 

My guess is that they sell the phone numbers to spammers, the same way a lot of websites and other organizations that ask you for your e-mail address do.

The Bitcoin ATM space is still like the wild west these days.  I recall reading an interview from the owner of CoinFlip saying that they do things legitimately but that other ATM owners may not, and nobody is really paying attention to it as far as the government goes.  I totally believe that, because there's obviously no standard in place as to what information they need to get from their customers.  That'll probably change, but right now it's a free-for-all.

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June 09, 2021, 05:51:27 AM
Merited by The Pharmacist (3)
 #10

Give a fake phone number at your own risk.
Well, when they ask you for a phone number it's because you have to enter a code into the ATM from an SMS text they send you.  As to why they need to do that, I have no idea because that's not KYC.  It's easy enough to either use a burner phone or get someone to receive the SMS for you, so they're not getting any reliable identity info from you that way. 

My guess is that they sell the phone numbers to spammers, the same way a lot of websites and other organizations that ask you for your e-mail address do.

The Bitcoin ATM space is still like the wild west these days.  I recall reading an interview from the owner of CoinFlip saying that they do things legitimately but that other ATM owners may not, and nobody is really paying attention to it as far as the government goes.  I totally believe that, because there's obviously no standard in place as to what information they need to get from their customers.  That'll probably change, but right now it's a free-for-all.

Ah, thank you very much for that, I didn't realize this. The way OP phrased was like he was wondering why they were asking for it, if it's the law or them.

Selling to spammers is very likely what happens. We can't get a burner phone in my country now since maybe 15 years ago but when you travel to another country you can get tourist phone numbers that last only a few weeks. Now this one, I tried before and used it at crypto websites and yup, massive spam.

Very strange that ATMs are allowed to do this, because businesses even regardless of it being crypto, should be regulated by privacy law. I believe it in Asia where I live but in "developed" places, I thought all these things are totally bad in books.

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June 17, 2021, 05:36:01 PM
 #11

You are legally required to give your actual information when performing AML/KYC. I believe when you submit these things you even have to check a box saying you declare it all to be truthful information. Give a fake phone number at your own risk.

If you don't want to do all these things why not buy online where kyc isn't required?

If you have a burner phone you paid cash for, good luck anyone tracking that. If you're really worried, just take the battery out when you're done using.

As for online, the whole getting gift cards to sell to someone seems like more of a hassle, and more expensive than/risky than a bitcoin ATM. Too bad I got in late enough to where there are no longer just online exchanges that dont ask KYC when actually buying. That was long ago.


But yeah as someone else mentioned. It's weird that it would even be a KYC requirement since there is no real way to verify who is buying what.
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June 17, 2021, 10:48:43 PM
 #12

We can't get a burner phone in my country now since maybe 15 years ago but when you travel to another country you can get tourist phone numbers that last only a few weeks.
Really?  I don't know what country you live in, but that sucks.  Not being able to purchase an anonymous cellphone is a huge slap in the face to privacy.  There's no legitimate reason I can think of that should prevent a person from being able to use any type of phone anonymously, and just thinking about that, it wasn't all that long ago that pay phones (the kind you'd put coins in) still existed, though it's been quite a while that you could find them everywhere.  And if you don't want to give up your personal phone number to whoever owns the BTCATM, a burner phone is ideal.

Very strange that ATMs are allowed to do this, because businesses even regardless of it being crypto, should be regulated by privacy law. I believe it in Asia where I live but in "developed" places, I thought all these things are totally bad in books.
I don't know much about the legalities of businesses using their customers' data, but I'm fairly sure it isn't illegal to sell a list of e-mail addresses or phone numbers to spammers, advertisers, or anyone else--at least not in the US.  I'm sure the laws vary by country. 

In the US, I don't even know what the laws are regarding bitcoin ATMs, e.g. what it takes to operate one, what kind of data needs to or can be collected, and what the owner can or needs to do with that data.  My impression is that it's a murky area, because some of these machines require a drivers license scan, and some don't.  And since you can use any phone number you want as long as you can receive an SMS text on it, I'd assume there really isn't a KYC requirement at all if you're buying crypto in small amounts (<$900 is usually the cutoff before they start requiring more info).  Thus, the machines that want more info are most likely selling it to somebody.

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June 17, 2021, 11:41:09 PM
 #13

In my country they're legally obliged to collect a bunch of information, including phone numbers.

I'd imagine rules around the world to be somewhat similar. Bitcoin ATMs themselves would want as little information as they want given that the more information required of them, the more costs of compliance are.

So long as you are using a reputable service, they won't do anything with your phone number. They have far more to lose in reputation and potentially their whole remittance licence than a measly few hundred dollars they can make by selling your info.




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June 17, 2021, 11:44:40 PM
 #14

In my country they're legally obliged to collect a bunch of information, including phone numbers.

I'd imagine rules around the world to be somewhat similar. Bitcoin ATMs themselves would want as little information as they want given that the more information required of them, the more costs of compliance are.

So long as you are using a reputable service, they won't do anything with your phone number. They have far more to lose in reputation and potentially their whole remittance licence than a measly few hundred dollars they can make by selling your info.

Also, if you feel that someone is contacting you with strange proposal, just ignore it and don't entertain, if in case your number is compromised. Don't believe too-good-to-be-true offers because high likely that it is a scam. Because if these bitcoin ATMs will somehow use the numbers of their clients for other purposes, I don't think their business will thrive if they will receive customers' complaints.

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June 18, 2021, 02:59:37 AM
 #15

Legally? It's complicated to answer because laws differ from one place to another. But I don't think they are. I guess it is more of the design of the Bitcoin ATM itself. Although I haven't used one, I have read from other sources that some have actually tried using a Bitcoin ATM that does not ask for a phone number.

Anyway, I don't think Bitcoin ATM providers and operators make use of their clients' phone numbers other than its purpose which is for a one-time information sent through SMS that you need to input to the ATM to complete the transaction.

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June 18, 2021, 06:04:36 AM
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 #16

We can't get a burner phone in my country now since maybe 15 years ago but when you travel to another country you can get tourist phone numbers that last only a few weeks.
Really?  I don't know what country you live in, but that sucks.  Not being able to purchase an anonymous cellphone is a huge slap in the face to privacy.  There's no legitimate reason I can think of that should prevent a person from being able to use any type of phone anonymously, and just thinking about that, it wasn't all that long ago that pay phones (the kind you'd put coins in) still existed, though it's been quite a while that you could find them everywhere.  And if you don't want to give up your personal phone number to whoever owns the BTCATM, a burner phone is ideal.

Very strange that ATMs are allowed to do this, because businesses even regardless of it being crypto, should be regulated by privacy law. I believe it in Asia where I live but in "developed" places, I thought all these things are totally bad in books.
I don't know much about the legalities of businesses using their customers' data, but I'm fairly sure it isn't illegal to sell a list of e-mail addresses or phone numbers to spammers, advertisers, or anyone else--at least not in the US.  I'm sure the laws vary by country. 

In the US, I don't even know what the laws are regarding bitcoin ATMs, e.g. what it takes to operate one, what kind of data needs to or can be collected, and what the owner can or needs to do with that data.  My impression is that it's a murky area, because some of these machines require a drivers license scan, and some don't.  And since you can use any phone number you want as long as you can receive an SMS text on it, I'd assume there really isn't a KYC requirement at all if you're buying crypto in small amounts (<$900 is usually the cutoff before they start requiring more info).  Thus, the machines that want more info are most likely selling it to somebody.

Yes, that was the price of all the supposedly terror attacks using mobile phones. Ever since 9/11, the US pressured a lot of Asian countries to enforce identity on phone. It gets worse and worse. At first, you need ID to buy a phone and a sim card. Then the sim card would expire if not loaded with credit. Then they limit the number of sims you can have per ID.

Today, your sim card expires immediately if the credit is not loaded. It used to be you could buy as many sim cards and they never expire. And many many preloaded sims on burner phones. But problem is supposedly because they use burner phones/sims to detonate bombs:( Of course there are ways to get these phones and sims but they would be illegal and expensive.

In fact it is better as a tourist, you can come to the airport and get a free sim, you still have to give ID but they let you use free 30 days. In my current country anyway.

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July 01, 2021, 09:59:41 AM
 #17

It's likely to be a KYC measure that can't just be ignored.

Using an online number will probably work, although given that you're going to provide your ID anyway, what's the point? It's not like providing a virtual number could all of a sudden spare you from the prying eyes of regulators if they so wish to track you down.

Either way, I personally believe that Bitcoin ATMs provide very little value. The convenience factor is not there given that you'd have to travel all the way to the nearest location, AND you're getting less than ideal rates usually. Just buy off LBC or any regulated spot exchange, you should be able to save both time and money.

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July 01, 2021, 05:03:04 PM
 #18

Are they legally required to ask for your number or do they want it for themselves?

Are there any free online numbers that will work?
There are two reasons:
1. They do this to verify who withdraws money
2. There is a law from the government that pushes them to verify you.

In any way, they have the right to ask you for this kind of KYC, especially when it comes to bitcoin wallet where they want to be sure that their service isn't for money launderers and in case something happens, they'll be able to provide all the necessary information from their side that's required by the government.

If you have withdrawn money via the contactless method (not by inserting your card in the ATM), you would be asked to enter the message from your phone (It's just an example of one case from personal experience).
So, it's pretty logical and if everything is okay, I don't see any problem in it.


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July 03, 2021, 10:21:42 AM
 #19

I think that we should include a personal mobile number to register for a financial related platform, especially when the platform is registered in an area. The respective platforms need this to know if their users are real or not, thus preventing bots.

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July 06, 2021, 11:00:38 AM
 #20

Huh

The ATMs I've used haven't asked for my phone number. (There were shitcoins machines in Europe).

If you're looking for a trading/lending place, better avoid Poloniex, as it socializes losses. Learn more about it on this topic.
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