Category Archives: privacy


For a moment there I was a bit worried about the new service from 118800, whereby they provide directory enquiries (of a sort) for mobile numbers as well as land lines.

Essentially they search for the person you want, and if they find a mobile number for them they text that mobile, asking the recipient to contact you (and you pay a quid for the pleasure).

My first thought was an irrational one, along the lines of “but my mobile number’s private, how dare they intrude?”  On further analysis though…

  • I can just ignore the text (if I ever received one)
  • I doubt any directory of mobile numbers will ever have my number in it
  • Anyone wanting to contact me has exactly two clicks to find me anyway

What is more interesting is the fact that it is unthinkable that the system might give out your mobile number. We seem to have finally got to a place where who knows our number is actually something that we control, rather than the service providers. Compare that to the horror of domestic land lines (TPS or not) and it’s a giant leap forward.

(Oh, and as @dtt101 pointed out, that “make the text dark” button was clearly the result of weeks of design arguments. Classy!)