Apple Hijacked my Messages

I work for a financial technology company, and have been issued a MacBook pro as my work machine. On it, I had to enable Apple Pay for testing some flows in which Apple Pay would be supported. I entered my card and billing info into my system settings, set it all up, and yay, the feature works.

This MacBook is the only Apple product I have, and is asleep when I'm not working.

Yesterday morning, a Monday, I opened my laptop and got that usual flurry of notifications on the lock screen. A few of them looked unfamiliar, but I noticed that they contained a phone number. Odd...

I logged in to the machine, went to the notifications tab, and saw that I had unread text messages from my Dad. Well, not text messages – iMessages.

Apple took my phone number from whatever setup process I did and enabled it on iMessage without my consent and without telling me. My parents both have iPhones, which means they use the iMessage app, which usually means it falls back to SMS when texting my Android. This time, my Dad's phone saw that I had an iMessage account and silently switched over to sending messages there so I had no notice of pending messages from him.

Thank god they were just some silly pictures. The idea that both parties can suddenly have communication cut without either side knowing is terrifying. I'm sure Apple designed this in good faith that someone using a MacBook is probably bought into their ecosystem, but in this case they let both my father and I go about our days without knowing we're not reaching each other.

Think real hard about these “automagic” user flows. He sent me silly pictures this time. It could have been anything.