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I am in the process of making a deal on Craigslist but I do not really want to release my phone number to someone who I will eventually forget after a while and I am sure the next person would feel the same.

So I desire some application that I can give my phone number , it returns either :

  • a next phone number (I give this to the next person and they can call it which then connects us) or

  • a link (something similar to bit.ly , except for phone numbers).

Whichever representation, it should have an expiry date. When the person uses this as proxy for my phone number we can connect using our phones without ever releasing our personal information.

Are there any applications with the features needed to keep my number private for a call like described above ?

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3 Answers 3

up vote 1 down vote accepted

A quick search found a few options.

CraigsNumber has either morphed into or merged with Numbr but it's not currently available. Too bad, as it looked spot on.

iNumbr lets you get another number, but it's no longer a free service ($6.99/month). Certainly it's not for "throwaway" numbers, although you could use it that way.

Another service is Babble.ly. It doesn't provide you with a phone number, but gives you a link that when the other person clicks will ring your phone.

Jangl is similar to Babble.ly, where you exchange Jangl codes which you can each use to get a phone number to use to call each other that is itself disposable, but it's also currently unavailable.

Babble.ly looks like your best option.

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  1. Skype button + skype forwarding to phone. Cost: you have to pay in packs of $10, but the call itself is 10¢ a minute.

  2. Telephone booth + slipped note. You know, like in those ransom movies.

  3. I wish I could say drop.io, but we all know what happens when Facebook comes around.

  4. Possibly the easiest and safest option is to buy a prepaid phone which'll run you about $30 (or less if you have a spare GSM phone lying around). Put a dollar on it and toss the SIM card when you're done (or if you make a lot of craigslist transactions, it might actually be a better idea to keep the sim card and ask for another number).

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Not a direct answer to your question, but if you use Google Voice you can Block any phone number. Then, when that phone number calls, they'll get the "this number is no longer in service" message.

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