How to Resolve Google Voice Verification Code Scam

What is the Google Voice verification scam?

This scam on Google is a common scam nearly-identical to the Craigslist verification code scam. The Google Voice verification scam is basically carried out by a scammer to create a Google Voice account using a third-party target's mobile number. Once the scam is done, the scammer will receive a Google Voice number. The scammer will then use the target's phone number to validate their fake account, while the victim remains oblivious to the whole thing.

Why create a fake account?

There are a few reasons why a scammer might want a Google Voice account using someone else's phone number. Google Voice allows them to use a new phone number from several different locations of their selection. And trust me, whatever that scammer might want to do with your phone number is probably not good.

How Google Voice verification scam works.

Imagine you enter your phone number out in public. Maybe for an ad, and account somewhere or some other reason. The scammer will contact you via a text message or email. The message from the scammer depends on the situation but they will always seek to get their number somehow. For example, they may say that they want you to verify that they are that person, and you must send them a code sent to your phone. In other situations, they may be more direct, the scammer might say that they want to call you and suggest that you use Google Voice.

Regardless the scammer will use the victim's phone number to sign up for Google Voice where they are given a Google Voice number using the target's phone number as the forwarding number. Then the scammer will be able to make calls using the new Google Voice number from multiple devices, like their phone or their computer.

If you have become a victim of the Google Voice Verification Code Scam, you need to retrieve your phone number back as soon as possible. Here's how to do that:

How to retrieve your scammed phone number

There are two potential solutions to get your problem.

Create a Google Voice account using your stolen number. Your first option is to create a Google Voice account if you do not have one. Go to https://voice.google.com and select a Google Voice number. You can search by city or area code and then choose one from the list.

Press the Verify button to verify your phone number. You will be prompted to enter a number to link, add your stolen phone number and hit "SEND CODE". If you have never used the reclaim process for the scammed number before, you will receive a warning that the number is currently used by another account, and you will be asked if you want to reclaim it. Press "Yes". This will delete your phone number from the scammer's account.

Create a Google Voice account using a different phone number.
You will need to generate a Google Voice account if you do not already have one. Go to https://voice.google.com again and select a Google Voice number.

Press the Verify button to confirm your phone number. You will be told to enter a phone number, add a different phone number of yours instead of the one you're trying to retrieve and hit "SEND CODE". Check your phone for a text message from Google Voice. It will have a verification code. Type in the code you received from Google and press, "VERIFY".

Press "FINISH" when asked to. The Google Voice phone number will now be added to your mobile phone, and it will ring when someone calls your Google Voice number.

Once your account has been set up, go to this page: https://voice.google.com/settings and press the new linked number to connect it to your scammed number. Enter the stolen number in the field that appears and press "SEND CODE".

If you have never used the reclaim process for the scammed number before, you will receive a warning that the number is currently used by another account, and you will be asked if you want to reclaim it. Press "Yes". This will delete your phone number from the scammer's account.

August 13, 2019

12 Comments

  • Eliana Dunlap:

    I tried and received the same issue...wouldn't accept my number. Who do we contact to resolve this?

  • Gabriella Castillo:

    I tried the code and it didn't come on my phone. I tried my husband's and I got his. Then I went and added my own number. Got the code and it worked. Don't pay the $20 to port it.

  • Candice:

    I got scammed, and I can’t seem to fix it. Google, PLEASE HELP!!!

  • Katelyn Smith:

    If I did not actually send the code back because I read this helpful article, do I have any cause to worry?

  • Lauren:

    I used my Mom’s cell to set up my Google voice after the scam. Then added my cell and deleted hers in the Voice app. How come she cannot call or text me now?

  • Monse:

    Hi I actually try this but when I try inputting the my scammed phone # it tells me,” Google voice can’t use this phone # to verify your account verify this phone number. Try very thing w another number “ Help!!:(

  • Daniella:

    This just happened to me as well. I am always so cautious but I was under the impression it was something with work, and gave them the code. As I tired to do the app with my current phone number, it says "This phone number can't be used to sign up for Google voice number. Try verifying with another number"

    Now what?

    Can the scammer retrieve any of my personal information???

  • Nicole:

    As soon as I fell for this scam, something didn't feel right about it so I did a quick google search and of course found out I was scammed. So I tried this right away and it did work for me!!! Thank you!!

  • tim:

    Google SUCKS. I ask them for help and they did NOTHING... In so many words they said not our problem and we don't have anyone to help you fix this.. Google steals your personnel information and sells it so you know they have the money to support problems bout dont give a shit.

  • Alain :

    Envié un código de verificación de Google voice a otra persona y no logro recuperar mi número robado

  • Bitsa Burger:

    I just tried to use this to "reclaim" my phone number (yes, I stupidly ignored the warning & sent the code bc I thought someone found my son's cat & was desperate to help him get it back (isolation during pandemic is much harder on some). BUT Google just says: "This phone number can't be used to sign up for a Google Voice number..." & I don't have another number to verify with. I've never had Google Voice account, on this or any other phone. Any other ideas anyone?

  • Anamaria Spiteri:

    Hello - I tried this because my number was indeed stolen with this verification scam. When I went to create a google voice number it did not accept my number and said it would not work. I was not told that it was being used by someone else.