You would agree with me that your sim card is becoming more and more tied to your financial activities.
More so, now that the Bank Verification Number (BVN) which has now become integral to our banking activities, has been tied to our identity.
Before now, you could lose your sim card and it wouldn’t affect your banking in any way.
But nowadays, a lost sim card could actually translate to loss of money or the inability to access banking.
I’ve had the frustrating experience of losing the phone number linked with my BVN, and couldn’t retrieve the Sim card.
I’ve also had the experience of changing my BVN phone number to a new one after several failed trials to retrieve my lost Sim card.
In this post, I’ll be sharing the importance of your Sim card to your banking, and how to change your BVN phone number if you aren’t able to retrieve a lost or stolen Sim card.
How Your Lost or Stolen Sim Card Affect Your BVN and Banking
It is well-known that if your sim card gets lost or stolen, your bank account could be compromised.
Since your sim card is tied to your BVN, any bank account authentication or SMS would be difficult to get.
Worse still, if your BVN Sim Card is in the hands of a fraudulent person.
Anyone with your Sim card could have access to your private banking information such as how many bank accounts you maintain, which banks you bank with, and your account balance.
This information could give anyone the starting point to then get access to your bank account.
So, the best thing to do when your Sim card gets lost or stolen is to retrieve it as soon as possible.
Get it blocked and then work towards retrieving it. That is the best way forward.
Lost or Stolen Sim Card That Wasn’t Retrieved?
The major issue with BVN phone numbers is that when a Sim card is lost or stolen, and the owner didn’t retrieve it, the network provider may reassign that Sim card to another user.
This creates a lot of problems.
I’ve heard people getting bank SMS alerts from bank accounts that weren’t theirs.
I’ve even experienced it first hand. A case where Fidelity bank was sending me credit and debit SMS alerts from an account belonging to one Ms. Mariam.
The problem with this misconstruct is that the new owner of the Sim card may be tempted to dig deep and try to have access to the bank account.
Just imagine that you just bought a new Sim card, and then a bank started sending you credit alerts worth millions belonging to the former owner of the Sim card.
It would be tempting to the average Nigerian, and they may try to have access to that account because they know there is money in it.
Steps To Change Your BVN Phone Number
In the event that the phone number tied to your BVN has been reassigned to another user by the network providers, there will be no other way to secure your bank account than to change your BVN phone number.
So, how do you go about this? Here are the steps.
Get A Sworn Affidavit
The first step to prove you are the owner of the phone number tied to your BVN without having the actual Sim card, is to swear an affidavit.
Find a reputable court around your location and swear an affidavit that you own the particular lost or stolen phone number.
Get A Valid Government-issued ID Card
Once you have sworn an affidavit, you’ll have to get a valid government-issued ID card that has the same name as the one in your bank account.
You would also need the ID card to swear the affidavit in the first place.
Go to your BVN Bank
After getting a sworn affidavit and a valid ID card, the next step is to head to your BVN bank.
Note that your BVN bank may be different from the bank you maintain an account with.
The bank where you registered your BVN is the bank recognized as your BVN bank.
Request For Change of BVN Phone Number
At the bank, you will need to request for a change of BVN phone number. This is different from the phone number on your bank account.
So, beware of misconstruing both requests. Since you obviously bank with your BVN bank, this mistake can often occur.
Validate BVN Identity at the Bank
At the bank, you would need to validate your BVN Identity via a fingerprint scan.
This means that a change of BVN phone number can only be done by the owner of the account themselves.
Nobody can help you change your BVN number no matter how much you pay, so beware of fraudulent people advertising quick change of BVN phone number.
Wait for 24 Hours
The change of BVN phone number propagates in 24 hours or less. So, you’d need to wait for a maximum 24 hours to get your BVN linked to your new phone number.
To check if your phone number has been linked to your BVN, simply dial *565*0# on your new number.
If it shows your BVN number, then it means the new phone number used to make that request is now your BVN phone number. Cheers.