Toronto-area woman wants Freedom Mobile to stop assigning her phone number to other people


A Toronto-area woman says Freedom Mobile is still assigning her cell number to other people, even though she took the number with her when she moved to a new provider last year.

Tsahai Carter, 22, made the switch last August. Since then, she says, on three separate occasions she's received phone calls and text messages intended for other people who'd been assigned the same number by Freedom Mobile.

Carter, who lives north of Toronto in Markham, Ont., has also fielded phone calls from frustrated customers, wondering why someone else is getting their calls and messages. 

"They're getting mad at me for taking over their phone number, when really I had nothing to do with it," said Carter. "So it's a bit stressful."

This isn't the first time Freedom Mobile customers have complained about a mix-up in phone numbers.

In 2019, CBC reported on another customer who'd been given a number by Freedom Mobile that was still in use by someone else: a man who'd ported the number with him when he moved from Freedom to Fido.

'Human error'

At that time, the company said the situation was extremely unusual, and was investigating to determine what happened.

Nearly two years later, Carter says she's concerned the issue still hasn't been resolved, even after she raised it twice with the company herself.

"It really shouldn't be occurring at all," she said.

In a statement, a spokesperson for Shaw Communications Inc., which owns Freedom Mobile, says the problem was due to "human error." 

Chethan Lakshman says when phone numbers are ported from Freedom Mobile to other providers, they're quarantined in a "port-out pool" so they can't be given to other customers. In this case, Lakshman says that didn't happen and the number was reassigned.