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Text messages being resent from February, in November (theverge.com)
25 points by ryanmercer 6 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 7 comments

I first learned about this in the Google FI subreddit here https://www.reddit.com/r/GoogleFi/comments/dszauf/unexpected...

I was one of the people that received a message, just before 4am ET I received a message from someone I am not on speaking terms with and replied in a fashion one would expect for dealing with such an individual. Yay fun. Someone in another thread in that sub had reported they received a message from their ex calling them babe, and also replied.

My question here is, why is there some server out there that is storing messages from at least 4 carriers from 9 months ago and resending them.

I assumed carriers kept our messages for a certain length of time, and that one or more government agencies might store them indefinitely, but why is some random server out there holding onto messages for 4 major carriers for 9 months and as configured in some way that allows it to resend those messages NINE months later?

Forget the security implications of this, what about people that received messages from a friend/family member/co-worker/loved one that has since died like in the article:

>one person said they received a message from an ex-boyfriend who had died; another received messages from a best friend who is now dead.

Can anyone familiar with this part of the communications industry speculate on why such a thing is even possible or shed some light on just how long these messages might be stored on such servers?

Telcos use a third parties to transfer messages between networks so you can sms anyone (eg att to Verizon). Someone like Syniverse probably restored a database from Feb which caused the resends.

They store the data because it's valuable.

So many questions.

It’s unclear from Reddit and the article: Was this incident limited entirely to SMS (and maybe MMS) messages? That is, “green bubbles only?”

This appears more like some kind of batch that never got released, stuck, and finally just flushed. Maybe spam processing? A server crashed as a bunch of messages went into a scan, and they got stuck in a quarantine or a crash recovery process?

The conspiracy theorist in me says that unnamed "vendor" is a 3 letter agency that had a bunch of messages drop into a dead-letter queue or similar and something caused them to all be re-processed... a la Room 641A (Yes I know in Room 641A they weren't in the middle but just saving off a copy but still).

better headline: Across major US carriers people received text messages sent Valentine's Day

Its not clear that the messages are being resent. They appear to being delivered for the first time.

>Its not clear that the messages are being resent. They appear to being delivered for the first time.

This thread has multiple people reporting receiving messages they'd already received previously:


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