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Thread: Weird Number Porting Experience

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    Post Weird Number Porting Experience

    Hi Everyone

    I ported my number to MTN from Telkom, because Telkom's signal is terrible in Stellenbosch. My experience was not as smooth as I expected it to be.

    On Saturday, 28 April, I went to the MTN store to do the porting, the rep told me that an SMS will be sent to my number notifying me of the port and that the number will be ported at night, but I must not use the new MTN SIM until the Telkom SIM deactivates. Nothing weird about it so far.

    My Telkom SIM still had minutes and data on it and was valid until 30 April, and I was sure the porting would occur before then. Fast forward to the Monday, 30 Apr, I had not receive any SMS about porting and the number still wasn't ported. I thought maybe it had something to do with the long weekend and that I would sort it out on Wednesday. I still made some calls from my Telkom SIM that night to use the expiring minutes.

    Come Tuesday and as expected my Telkom SIM had no airtime/minutes/data. Wednesday, I tried to go to MTN to figure out what's going on with the porting, but they were taking forever to serve their customers. Thursday I was too busy to get to MTN

    Thursday evening, I decided to switch over to my back up phone, which is dual SIM. Using the dual SIM phone, I was going to use my Telkom SIM and another SIM with data. That way I could use WhatsApp to communicate. That is when I noticed an issue. I was not receiving the WhatsApp activation SMS and Telkom was not sending the usual welcome SMS when you insert a SIM into another phone.

    Keep in mind that my Telkom SIM still shows it has a 4G data connection, i.e. it is still active on Telkom's Network, and I still did not receive any porting SMS. Also, I have not been receiving any SMS's since Sunday night, but I never actually noticed until this point.

    So, now I decide to see what happens if I put the new MTN SIM in my phone. The MTN SIM ends up working in the phone, all the SMS's that was sent to me since Monday, starts coming in. It turns out the number was already ported, but I don't know when exactly that happened.

    The real weird part is that the Telkom SIM is still active on the network. In fact, if I dial *1# on the Telkom SIM and *123*888# on the MTN SIM, they both show the same phone number. All phone calls and SMS's go to the MTN SIM. I have not loaded airtime on the Telkom SIM to see if it is usable for dialling out or data.

    Another weird thing is that after inserting my MTN SIM I received a number of SMS's from those 15 digit numbers (16 if the 0 is replaced with 27), containing a long string of letters and numbers, always starting with "AC/". Not sure if what that is about or if it has to do with the WhatsApp activation.

    So yeah, weird! No SMS notification and the old SIM is still active. Is having the old SIM still active an issue? And I can see now how SIM swap fraud happens. MTN and the other operators should do something about this.

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    It's not a problem with MTN it's actually a very nice Telkom feature that I commend them on. They will release you number even if it's in contract and just allocate a new number to your Telkom sim so you do not lose any data, airtime, sms or minutes or any recurring benefits.

    Should you wish to move back to Telkom you can port back into that simcard again.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cavedog View Post
    It's not a problem with MTN it's actually a very nice Telkom feature that I commend them on. They will release you number even if it's in contract and just allocate a new number to your Telkom sim so you do not lose any data, airtime, sms or minutes or any recurring benefits.
    I think Vodacom work this way too, but not Cell-C.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ghost729 View Post
    Hi Everyone

    I ported my number to MTN from Telkom, because Telkom's signal is terrible in Stellenbosch. My experience was not as smooth as I expected it to be.

    On Saturday, 28 April, I went to the MTN store to do the porting, the rep told me that an SMS will be sent to my number notifying me of the port and that the number will be ported at night, but I must not use the new MTN SIM until the Telkom SIM deactivates. Nothing weird about it so far.

    My Telkom SIM still had minutes and data on it and was valid until 30 April, and I was sure the porting would occur before then. Fast forward to the Monday, 30 Apr, I had not receive any SMS about porting and the number still wasn't ported. I thought maybe it had something to do with the long weekend and that I would sort it out on Wednesday. I still made some calls from my Telkom SIM that night to use the expiring minutes.

    Come Tuesday and as expected my Telkom SIM had no airtime/minutes/data. Wednesday, I tried to go to MTN to figure out what's going on with the porting, but they were taking forever to serve their customers. Thursday I was too busy to get to MTN

    Thursday evening, I decided to switch over to my back up phone, which is dual SIM. Using the dual SIM phone, I was going to use my Telkom SIM and another SIM with data. That way I could use WhatsApp to communicate. That is when I noticed an issue. I was not receiving the WhatsApp activation SMS and Telkom was not sending the usual welcome SMS when you insert a SIM into another phone.

    Keep in mind that my Telkom SIM still shows it has a 4G data connection, i.e. it is still active on Telkom's Network, and I still did not receive any porting SMS. Also, I have not been receiving any SMS's since Sunday night, but I never actually noticed until this point.

    So, now I decide to see what happens if I put the new MTN SIM in my phone. The MTN SIM ends up working in the phone, all the SMS's that was sent to me since Monday, starts coming in. It turns out the number was already ported, but I don't know when exactly that happened.

    The real weird part is that the Telkom SIM is still active on the network. In fact, if I dial *1# on the Telkom SIM and *123*888# on the MTN SIM, they both show the same phone number. All phone calls and SMS's go to the MTN SIM. I have not loaded airtime on the Telkom SIM to see if it is usable for dialling out or data.

    Another weird thing is that after inserting my MTN SIM I received a number of SMS's from those 15 digit numbers (16 if the 0 is replaced with 27), containing a long string of letters and numbers, always starting with "AC/". Not sure if what that is about or if it has to do with the WhatsApp activation.

    So yeah, weird! No SMS notification and the old SIM is still active. Is having the old SIM still active an issue? And I can see now how SIM swap fraud happens. MTN and the other operators should do something about this.
    A but off-topic, but won't the mtn and Telkom signal strength not be similar, seeing that Telkom will roam on mtn when their own network signal is weak?

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    Quote Originally Posted by dennis.se.foon View Post
    A but off-topic, but won't the mtn and Telkom signal strength not be similar, seeing that Telkom will roam on mtn when their own network signal is weak?
    It will but MTN roaming is limited to 3G only which is still very acceptable but obviously not as good as being on MTN directly.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cavedog View Post
    It will but MTN roaming is limited to 3G only which is still very acceptable but obviously not as good as being on MTN directly.
    Ahhh. 4g - the need for speed

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    Super Grandmaster cavedog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dennis.se.foon View Post
    Ahhh. 4g - the need for speed
    So yeah you get Telkom LTE and LTE-A but when roaming you only getting 3G. In terms of coverage with Telkom you should have better coverage than Cellc because of the MTN roaming and the fact that you can roam on 3G in the whole of SA where with Cellc 3G roaming is limited to certain areas so if you are in the city then no 3G roaming on Vodacom if you are on Cellc.

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    The problem with weak LTE signal is that the switching between home and roaming networks is disruptive. Not to mention that some times the phone (Galaxy S7) insists if first needs a few minutes of trying to make the LTE connection work before it goes onto to roaming.

    The other issue is battery life. Sitting in an area of weak signal really seemed to take it's toll on my battery life.

    Also I think Telkom's roaming on MTN's network seems low priority. Some times the 3G felt like 2G despite good signal.

    Pro-tip: if you're on Telkom and reside or work in an area where the signal is weak, just force your phone to roam on MTN.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cavedog View Post
    It's not a problem with MTN it's actually a very nice Telkom feature that I commend them on. They will release you number even if it's in contract and just allocate a new number to your Telkom sim so you do not lose any data, airtime, sms or minutes or any recurring benefits.

    Should you wish to move back to Telkom you can port back into that simcard again.
    I have no problem with them doing that. In fact, as you pointed out, it is commendable.

    The problem is that my Telkom SIM still shows the number which has already been ported to MTN, when I dial *1#. So, I was not allocated a new number.

    In fact if I dial from my Telkom SIM (still have a few minutes, to my surprise) to my MTN SIM, it shows I'm phoning a SIM with the same number as the SIM that's receiving the call. See photo below. The Redmi is Telkom and Galaxy is MTN. I can't phone to the Telkom SIM from the MTN SIM, though.

    Name:  IMG_20180505_185842.jpg
Views: 56
Size:  76.8 KB

    I foresee this could be used in SIM swap fraud.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ghost729 View Post
    I have no problem with them doing that. In fact, as you pointed out, it is commendable.

    The problem is that my Telkom SIM still shows the number which has already been ported to MTN, when I dial *1#. So, I was not allocated a new number.

    In fact if I dial from my Telkom SIM (still have a few minutes, to my surprise) to my MTN SIM, it shows I'm phoning a SIM with the same number as the SIM that's receiving the call. See photo below. The Redmi is Telkom and Galaxy is MTN. I can't phone to the Telkom SIM from the MTN SIM, though.

    Name:  IMG_20180505_185842.jpg
Views: 56
Size:  76.8 KB

    I foresee this could be used in SIM swap fraud.
    In that case make sure routing has been updated correctly... Usually Telkom allocates a new number. If you did not get allocated a new number something went wrong and the routing needs to be updated. You might find that calls from Telkom would be routed to your Telkom simcard.

    Call MTN port support and ask them to contact Telkom to update routing. Usually take 2 working days to get sorted.

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    Thanks. Will do.

    My brother called me earlier today and he is on Telkom, so I'm not having issues with calls from Telkom going to my Telkom SIM.
    Last edited by Ghost729; 05-05-2018 at 09:54 PM.

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