Here is an interesting view on how cell phone numbers are becoming the key personal identifier in Australia. From the article:
Most Australians can be identified by their date of birth, driver’s licence or tax file number, but a person’s mobile phone number is becoming an increasingly important part of their identity.
Queensland University of Technology researcher Dr Christine Satchell believes a person’s mobile phone is a type of virtual “home” where they can always be found.
“Changing your phone number is a very alienating thing to do, both for the person and their friends,” Dr Satchell said.
“It forms part of a person’s digital identity and even though it’s just a number, it’s very powerful.”
The Australian Mobile Phone Lifestyle Index shows most Australians retain their mobile number for about seven years, which is in contrast to other forms of contact.
Research suggests people change their e-mail address on average every six to 12 months, which Dr Satchell believes is linked to unwanted junk mail.
The number that really jumps out at me is email address change every six to 12 months. That seems a little hard to believe. But if it’s true that’s going to be a headache for a lot of services providers that use email addresses for their user’s identifiers.