How to Get Access to Old Phone Number: From Dust to Ring

  • Last Updated: 14 Mar 24
  • 14 min read
How to Get Access to Old Phone Number From Dust to Ring

Have you lost access to your old phone number? 🤳 Do you need guidance to get access to the number? If yes, then we’ve got you covered.

An old phone number is essential to stay connected to your friends, family 👪, and important contacts. 

More than that, you must have used your old number while creating various online platforms such as Gmail and Facebook. But you may not have updated your new number in these accounts. As a consequence, you will face a problem logging into your account later due to 2FA. Many people have gone through this problem and endeavor to get access to the number. 

If you are facing the same problem, this article will guide you on accessing your old phone number. You will learn about various steps that you need to take into account to retrieve old phone numbers, challenges you may face, and alternative ways to recover old phone numbers using third-party apps. 


  • Retrieving old phone numbers involves several steps, such as contacting the service provider, verifying ownership of the phone number, and paying certain charges.
  • When retrieving an old number, you may face several challenges, such as time constraints and carrier policy.
  • Access to old phone numbers helps you stay connected with your loved ones and old contacts. 
  • Telecom providers generally deactivate or assign the number to new users if the number isn’t active for more than six months.

How do I Get an Old Phone Number Back?

You can still retrieve your old phone number if the number isn’t assigned to another person yet. Initially, take out your SIM card and note the printed numbers. Then, contact the carrier and request for reactivation of the phone number. Carrier customer service reps can ask you for essential documents such as IMEI and SIM number. 

Moreover, ask if you can still use your old number, and if so, follow the customer service rep’s instructions.

These are the steps you can follow to get your old phone number back 👇:

  1. Take out your SIM from your smartphone and note the printed numbers.
  2. Reach out to the carrier via phone or email.
  3. Request for reactivation of phone number.
  4. Provide details to the customer service representatives, such as IMEI and SIM number.
  5. Ask if you can still use the number.
  6. Follow the customer service rep’s instructions.

How to Get the Old Landline Number Back?

Like a cell phone number, if your landline number is still not assigned to another person and is available in the pool of available numbers, you can request to reactivate it. Simply call on your old number, and if someone answers, it is already assigned to another user. If not, you can reach out to your carrier and ask for the reactivation of your old number. 

Here are a few steps that you can consider to get your old landline number back: 

  1. Know when your number was deactivated.
  2. Try calling or contacting a specific number.
  3. Contact your phone service provider.
  4. Ask for the reactivation of your old number.
  5. Wait for your provider to reactivate the number.

How do I Get My Old Mobile Number Back?

You can get your old number back by following the simple steps. First, you have to contact your service provider and provide essential information to verify your identity and ownership of the phone number. Then, follow their instructions and never forget to check if the number is assigned to another or still available. 

Remember that carriers wait for a certain time, such as 45 days or 90 days, before allocating your number to another user. If your number is available, then ask them to reactivate it. 

Follow these steps to get your old mobile phone number back:

  1. Contact your service provider.
  2. Provide necessary information.
  3. Follow their instructions.
  4. Explore the number recovery service.
  5. Check if the number is still available.
  6. If available, ask them to reactivate it.
✌️  Also Read: How to Get Back a Deactivated Phone Number Easily Without any Hassle

What are the Benefits of Accessing an Old Phone Number?

Getting access to your old phone number offers several significant benefits, such as enhancing connectivity, security, and convenience. The most beneficial point of accessing an old phone number is that it helps you get safe from hijacking your accounts and accessing your personal information.

Here are some key benefits of accessing an old phone number:

  • Maintain continuity of communication: With an old phone number, you can maintain lost connections with old contacts like colleagues and business associates who know your old number by heart. This can be especially crucial if you have important contacts and messages associated with the old number.
  • Simplify contact processes: If you have used the same number for a longer time, many people might likely have remembered your number. Getting access to an old number helps them to contact you easily. 
  • Protect against security theft: If you don’t request the reactivation of your old number, it can be reallocated to another person. A new owner having access to your old number can hijack your social media accounts and access your personal information. Thus, getting access to old numbers helps to protect against security theft.
  • Preserve personal data: Retrieval of an old phone number helps you to protect your private information stored within text messages, call logs, and multimedia files, ensuring they remain accessible only to intended recipients. 
  • Minimize update effort: Getting access to your old phone number helps you avoid the hassle of updating your phone number across various platforms. It saves time and effort.

What are the Challenges in Retrieving Old Phone Numbers?

Retrieving old phone numbers can be challenging due to the involvement of several factors. During the process, you have to go through a lot of processes as per the provider’s policies, which consumes a long time. 

Even more, you have gone through an endeavor while retrieving your old phone number without any guarantee of success. 

Here are some common challenges encountered while retrieving your old phone number 👇. 

  • Time Constraints:  If you start the reactivation process after a year of not using the number, there is a high chance that the provider may have already allocated it to someone else. This can make it difficult or nearly unattainable to recover your number.
  • Provider policies: Each telecom company has different policies and guidelines for retrieving old phone numbers. This can make the process more time-consuming and confusing. 
  • Verification requirements: Telecom service providers may ask for proof of ownership or other verification forms before you can retrieve your old phone number. It makes it more difficult for you if you don’t have the essential documentation. 
  • Third-party services: If you choose to take help from an external entity service to assist you in retrieving your phone number, it can incur additional charges and other potential risks. 
  • Privacy and security risks: If you don’t or cannot retrieve your account, the new owner might hijack your account and gain access to all your personal information. This puts your privacy and security at high risk. 
👍 You may also like: How to Get a Non-Recycled Phone Number

5 Steps to Get Access to Old Phone Number

5 Steps to Get Access to Old Phone Number

Losing access to your old phone number can be problematic 😞, especially when it holds important accounts or contacts. However, following the right steps will help you regain access to an old phone number. 

Here are five steps that you can follow to get access to the old phone number 👇:

1. Contact your previous service provider

Try to reach out to the previous phone number provider. Their customer service reps can guide you through the process of reactivating your old phone number or transferring it to a new account. 

2. Verify ownership

You have to provide documentation to them as proof of ownership for the number. This includes identification documents, previous billing statements, or any other information that establishes your connection to the number.

3. Review reactivation policies

Different Telecom providers have different policies and guidelines for retrieving phone numbers. Therefore, you have to check if your service provider has any specific policies. However, always be careful of any associated costs or requirements that may apply. 

4. Use online phone number recovery services

If you are unable to retrieve your old number through your service provider, consider trying an online phone number recovery service. This service can help you as it specializes in helping individuals recover their lost or inactive phone numbers. This service has access to various databases to find information about your old phone numbers. 

5. Consider alternative

If you still fail to retrieve your phone number, try alternative options, such as using third-party apps or changing your phone number. 

5 Alternative Ways to Recover USA Old Phone Numbers Using third-party apps

There is no way you can recover your old USA phone number after it has been inactive for more than six months. Some carriers only allow you to recover your number within 45 days. After that, you cannot recover even using third-party apps. The number would have been assigned to new users.

But if you request the reactivation of the number before the set times of the carrier, you can easily recover your phone number. 

Here are the steps from the top 5 USA mobile carriers to recover your old phone number 👇. 

1. AT&T 

AT&T is a USA phone number provider that provides regular SIM and eSIM at various pricing structures. If you’ve misplaced or forgotten your AT&T phone number, there are still various avenues you can explore to recover it. 

These are a few steps you can take to retrieve your phone number from AT&T. 

  • Visit AT&T’s official website and find the “My AT&T” option in the top right corner.
  • Sign in to your AT&T account.
  • Look for the Recovery phone number. 
  • If a number appears, you have a wireless number assigned to your ID.

2. T-Mobile

T-Mobile has been following AT&T in terms of phone number users. Its great customer service has attracted customers to it. Furthermore, T-Mobile has made it easy for users to recover phone numbers. 

You just need to call the T-Mobile customer service team and provide the necessary documents to recover your old phone number. 

3. Verizon

If you want to recover the old Verizon number for personal reasons, follow these steps:

  • Reach out to Verizon’s customer support.
  • Inquire about recovering your old phone number.
  • Explain your situation clearly, including details about the phone numbers associated with your account.
  • Continue to engage with Verizon’s customer service until a resolution is reached.

4. Google Voice

Google Voice easily helps you gain access to your old number easily. You just have to log into the correct Google account and look through your email inbox for any emails from Google Voice. Google sends you notifications or confirmation emails when you set up your Google Voice.  The email contains your Voice number or other relevant information.

In addition, you can also check by going to settings.

  • Logged into your account
  • Go to your Google Account settings and look for Google Voice settings
  • You might find information about your Voice number or associated phone numbers.

5. U.S Cellular

Losing access to your U.S. Cellular phone number can be infuriating. However, there are ways to recover it. 

You can simply find out your number by logging into your U.S Cellular account. Your account number is on the top left corner of your online account page. The PIN is the last 4 digits of your phone number. If you don’t have these numbers, reach out to US Cellular customer support. 

Tips to Get Access to Recover Old Phone Number

Tips to Get Access to Recover Old Phone Number

Some time back, you may have changed your phone number for some reason. But you already know that nearly everything in our lives is tied up with phone numbers such as Facebook and Instagram. 

However, you may not have updated all the platforms connected to your old phone number to the new one. So now, you need to get access to the old phone number. Here are the six tips to recover your old phone number. 

  • Identify the carrier and account information: Initially, you have to determine which carrier the phone number belonged to and what information you remember or have about the account. For instance, the last four digits of the social security number associated with the account or the billing address.
  • Contact the carrier: Once you identify the carriers, you can contact their customer service reps and clarify that you are trying to recover an old phone number. But always be prepared to provide any account information you have.  
  • Understand the carrier’s policies: Each telecom service has its own policies and guidelines for recovering old phone numbers. Sometimes, these policies may vary depending on how long the number has been inactive, the reason for the deactivation, and whether the number has been reallocated to another user. 
  • Provide necessary documentation: The carriers may ask you to provide documentation to verify your identity and ownership of the phone number. This documentation includes a passport, utility bill, or driver’s license. 
  • Pay any required fees: If the carrier charges a fee to recover your old phone number, you have to pay it. 
  • Wait for processing: Once you have submitted all the necessary information and documentation, the provider will process your request. This may take a few days or weeks. If your request is approved, you may get your number back. 


It’s important to retrieve your old phone number for several reasons. You need access to your old phone number because it contains a lot of personal info and is linked to your social media and online accounts. 

By retrieving your number, you can save your account from being seized by the new owner. Furthermore, it helps you connect with friends, family, and other people who have known you for a long time. Besides that, it enables you to avoid the hassle of updating your phone number on different online platforms. 

Nevertheless, it’s hard to recover your old phone number if you have unused it for more than 45 days or forget the number. Therefore, switching to a cloud phone system helps 😍 you out from all this recovering stress. 

Simply obtain a virtual phone number from KrispCall and enjoy unlimited calling 😊 to a large number of countries at substantially lower rates. These numbers are saved in your KrispCall account and will never cause you to bother about remembering them.


Can I get my old phone number back?

Yes, it is possible to get your old phone number back until the number isn’t assigned to another person. Contact the provider customer reps and follow their instructions. 

How long does it take to retrieve an old phone number?

The time it takes to retrieve an old phone number varies depending on various factors such as telecom provider policy and guidelines, length of time since you last used the number, and many more. Generally, it can take 2 to one week to retrieve an old phone number. 

Do I need to pay to access the old phone number?

Generally, you don’t have to pay to access the old number. However, some telecom providers may apply certain charges. 

Can I retrieve the old phone number that has been reassigned?

The simple answer is NO. Once your number is assigned to someone, it can’t be retrieved.

Are there any situations where reclaiming old phone numbers is impossible?

If your number is unused for more than ninety days, the telecom number provider reassigns the number to the new user. In this case, you are unable to reclaim your old phone number. 

Arun Chaudhary

Arun is SEO Analyst at KrispCall. He has written in extensively in the field of cloud telephony and call center solutions.

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