Can Verizon Bill Payers See Texts Sent?

by Kristie Massion
Text messages don't appear on the Verizon bill.

Text messages don't appear on the Verizon bill.

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In general, Verizon bill payers can't see the content of a text message sent from any phone on their account. Erasing a text message gets rid of the content, but not all evidence disappears. You see a variety of other information, including the phone number you sent a text to, the date and the time, allowing them to monitor usage.

Content

You can't see the content of a text sent to or from a phone on an account, whether that account is for a single phone or a family plan. The bill summary lists the number of texts, while the detailed view shows information about each text, including date and time. Depending on the type of phone and the data plan, the bill may also show if a picture or video message has been sent or received; however, the content of that is also not shown.

Number

On a detailed bill view setting, whether online or paper version, the incoming and outgoing phone number may be displayed. Private numbers appear on the bill if you send a text to them but may appear as "Private" on incoming texts. It's rare for a cellphone number to be private, so count on almost all phone numbers being shown.

Third-Party Services

Third-party companies like My Mobile Watchdog and Mobile Spy offer software that tracks text messages and phone calls, including allowing you to view the content of the message.The software allows the account holder to view text, photos and videos sent on a phone. If you set up the software, you should make the people being monitored aware of your tracking. However, many parents track their children without permission. Depending on your phone, you may be able to see tracking software installed, but in most cases a password is needed to disable monitoring.

Privacy

In general, Verizon doesn't store text messages on its network for a considerable length of time, so the sender, receiver and bill payer can't retrieve the messages. While Verizon limits the length of time a message is stored, the company has never publicly admitted to exactly when messages are deleted. Investigators with a court order gain access to any text messages stored on the network, which should be only the most recent.

About the Author

Kristie Massion is an award-winning writer and editor with over a decade of experience in both consumer and trade publications. After attending the New School University, she worked all over the world before settling in Seattle, where she now publishes magazines for a variety of nonprofit and corporate clients.

Photo Credits

  • Creatas/Creatas/Getty Images