Mobile phone

Celebrities’ phone numbers discovered in a brand new phone

What would you do if you discovered you had the Spice Girls on speed dial?

By Charlotte Brouwer, 03 January 2017
Celebrities’ phone numbers discovered in a brand new phone

Imagine unwrapping a brand new Apple iPhone 5S to find that it had a phonebook full of famous celebrities' mobile numbers, including those of Adele, David Walliams, Nick Grimshaw and Gok Wan, as well as other famous figures.

This is exactly what happened to Sophie Highfield, 31, who discovered that a suspected ‘iCloud glitch’ had synced her contacts with that of someone else's, and she had somehow ended up with not one but a whole phonebook full of celebrities on speed dial.

When she had bought the new phone from Three Mobile she added the numbers of her friends and family, apparently without noticing the other numbers in her phonebook.

 

A photo posted by @adele on

Surprisingly, she didn't actually realise what had happened until a few months later, when she typed in the letter 'M' to look for her mum's number, and instead found a long list of contact details for other people's mums. After trying other letters, she found she had the genuine contact details for a whole host of famous TV personalities, comedians, Radio 1 DJs, Olympic athletes, and even Spice Girl Emma Bunton.

Busted’s Matt Willis and Loose Women’s Denise Welch were also listed in her phone. But as well as celebrities, Sophie’s mobile also contains numbers for a host of random strangers – including ‘Brandon from Subway’ and ‘Sophie Babysitter’.

A very confused Sophie, of Erdington, Birmingham told The Metro "The phone was supposed to be brand new and completely untouched. I’ve got no idea how it has happened. I seem to have access to literally hundreds of people’s numbers. I didn’t notice it at first because the contacts aren’t in my address book but when I go into messages to send a text and type in the letter ‘A’, it comes up with ‘A’ for Adele. There are loads of celebrities – Emma Bunton, Denise Welch, Gok Wan. There are also lots of producers."

We can only imagine the possibilities and the fun someone could have with access to all those numbers (surely there are worse problems one can have), but Sophie admitted that it's more of a hindrance. "It's quite annoying having them all there. I actually have no idea how many numbers there are. There must be hundreds".

When asked how she thinks it could have happened, she replied "I feel like it might have belonged to someone from the BBC or the TV industry."

But exactly how it happens remains a mystery. After a month-long investigation, Apple have advised that the issue can happen with secondhand phones that haven’t been properly wiped.

More reason to buy your next phone second-hand, perhaps?