Can You Get a SIM Card in an Anonymous Name?April 27, 2022 (updated March 18, 2023) / My Data Removal Staff
Many people do not realize that wireless network companies (like Verizon and T-Mobile) share and sell your data. They are able to accumulate a huge amount of data about you. They know who you talk to, what services you use, what websites you visit, and sometimes the content of your communications.
An anonymous SIM card can create a layer between you and your phone provider. That way, the data they collect on your activity cannot easily be traced back to you. If you are trying to reduce the amount of personal information about you floating around on the internet, then this guide is for you.
T-Mobile had an few impressive data breaches not too long ago. If you follow the strategies outlined below you won’t need to worry if your mobile provider has a data breach.
Anonymous pay-as-you-go SIM
To get an anonymous SIM card, you need to complete the entire process with alias information. This includes creating an alias name, payment information, email address, and billing information. You then need to create an account with a mobile carrier that offers a prepaid option (e.g., Mint Mobile). While this does take a few steps, it is easier than you think!
How to get untraceable SIM Card: Step-By-Step
Get a SIM card from a mobile provider that offers prepaid service or pay-as-you-go service. Some of the main players do this, but we like some of the resellers (the smaller companies rent part of the big companies’ networks), especially Mint Mobile. Use whatever company you’d like. Some other companies that offer prepaid SIM cards are Boost, Ultra, Unreal, Lycamobile, T-Mobile, AT&T, Cricket, and Visible. There are a lot of options. You can get a Mint Mobile trial card off Amazon, eBay, or many other websites. Buy the SIM card anonymously if you can (use a Privacy.com card or find another way). The following steps outline what you’ll need to do in order to get a SIM card anonymously.
1. To set up a SIM card in an anonymous name, you need to select and be able to keep track of an alias name. See our alias strategy article for more details.
2. You will probably need an email address when you sign up. We suggest you use a masked email address or create a new email account specifically for this service.
4. Once you have your SIM and all of the required alias information, you install the SIM card and set it up. You will likely need to download their app or create an account. Fill in the alias information you created.
5. You are done!
Can you trace an unregistered SIM card?
In general, it is very difficult to trace a SIM card you have purchased this way. However, it doesn’t make you completely invisible. Law enforcement would be able to look into your details like where your SIM card was mailed to and how you paid for your mobile service. They could also get access to privacy information, making it easier for them to connect the dots.
Google and Apple share account information from phones that are in certain locations at certain times with law enforcement, for example, what cell towers are connected to which phones and what accounts those phones are logged into. So, logging into your primary Gmail account on your anonymous phone doesn’t make you very anonymous. Oops!
Best SIM card for privacy
Get a trial SIM card from Mint Mobile for a few dollars online. Use Privacy.com to create alias payment information, use a masked email address, and you are on your way to anonymous mobile phone usage.
Other considerations for your anonymous phone
If you really want your phone usage to be anonymous, the next step would be to use a VPN whenever you are using your phone. Otherwise, Mint Mobile, or whatever provider you go with, will be able to see what sites you are connecting to. Privacy-friendly VPNs can be pretty reasonably priced. See our article Should I get a VPN for more information.
Don’t send or receive anything sensitive over text. Instead, use secure communication methods. Our Secure Communications post explains this in more detail. We suggest you use Signal Private Messenger, which offers zero knowledge encryption, for texting and voice calls.
Limit what you share with Google or Apple. They are the big providers for mobile phone operating systems, but you don’t have to give them all of your real information to use their services. Ideally, you wouldn’t use their services at all. There are some privacy-friendly options for Google-free operating systems like GraphineOS that you can put on some android phones.
Stealth SIM card
While it won’t make you untraceable, getting an anonymous SIM card using the steps we recommend can provide a good layer of protection. It will also decrease the amount of information being gather about you and sold. This is an excellent step to take for those who are concerned and wanting to get more control of their personal privacy.
Enjoy the privacy that comes with using your mobile phone as we have described!
Take a look at our Best Anonymous Payment Methods post to learn the best ways to pay for your SIM card and other purchases.