Squid Game: Is 010-034 a Real Phone Number?

With a captivating set of events and developments, Netflix’s ‘Squid Game: The Challenge‘ ended on quite an intriguing note. The fans of the reality series were shown people being seemingly invited for another round of games using a card with shapes on one side and the phone number on the show. The printed number certainly piqued the interest of many, given its connection to ‘Squid Game,’ but has left many people to wonder if the number actually works and is related to the show.

010-034 is a Fake Phone Number

Seeing people holding calling cards with 010-034 printed on the back of the cards in ‘Squid Game: The Challenge’ has prompted many to wonder about the legitimacy of the number. Interestingly, this particular phone number has been linked to the franchise in a similar manner for a long time. When the first season of ‘Squid Game’ came around, the calling cards seen in the show actually had a completely different number, which led to certain complications.

Calling Card in ‘Squid Game’ (Image Credit: Noh Juhan/Netflix)

In South Korea, mobile numbers always start with 010, followed by an eight-digit combination. The prefix is not the country’s code, which in South Korea’s case is actually +82. So, when the showmakers decided to add a number to the calling cards featured in the show, they used a random eight-digit combination, not realizing that it actually belonged to someone. Given the popularity of the show, it did surprise many that a lot of people started to call the number as a prank or just out of curiosity.

Unfortunately, this meant that the woman to whom the original number belonged was flooded with calls related to ‘Squid Game,’ with her revealing to the media that she had had to delete upward of 4,000 wrong numbers. The owner of the number claimed that she could not change her number due to professional reasons and often got calls in the middle of the night from people either looking to prank her or genuinely believing her to be associated with the show.

Seong Gi-hun in ‘Squid Game’

Netflix did try to help the situation by asking viewers not to call the number seen in the show and tried to take measures to resolve the issue. As such, the showmakers decided to digitally alter the episodes to replace the number on the calling cards with 010-034. The prefix 010 denotes that it is a cell phone number from South Korea, but anyone who calls the whole number will only get an automated response about it being an invalid number.

So, no, 010-034 is not an actual number but has now become a staple of the franchise with its appearance in the reality TV spinoff of the original show. Though one may try to use the number to see who picks up, it is unlikely that you might even get a ringtone. Does this mean that the people are not being invited to another possible iteration of ‘Squid Game: The Challenge?’ Certainly not! Instead, the showmakers are making use of an online website to ask entries from across the world for its potential second season.

Read More: How to Apply for Squid Game The Challenge? How to Join the Cast?