MOBILE CLONING- HOW TO PREVENT CELLPHONE CLONING IN CDMA ENVIRONMENT
APPROACHES TO PREVENT CELL PHONE
CLONING IN CDMA
S7 CS A
RAJAGIRI SCHOOL OF ENGINEERING & TECHNOLOGY,KAKKANAD
The rapid growth of mobile communication has changed the vision of cellular phones
An easy accessibility condition causes cellular phones to be vulnerable against
numerous and potentially devastating threats from hackers.
In this seminar I presents an overview of cellular phones security based upon CDMA
technology specially on cell phone cloning.
CDMA- Code Division Multiple Access :uses spread spectrum technique.
Enables many wireless devices to transmit at the same time and on the same frequency.
2G and 3G mobile telecommunications standard.
Developed by Qualcomm. Service providers in India are Reliance Telecom and Tata
Utilized to send and receive voice transmission, data transmission and various other
types signalling managements.
Working: unique precise identity
Advantages of CDMA Technology
Phone call clarity is better.
Call rates are low as in comparison with existing GSM technology.
Well matched with other cellular technologies
Helpful in national and international roaming.
Prevents interference and destruction of service caused due to multipath
Engages in Soft hand-off 12/13/2015 5
Disadvantages of CDMA Technology
Cell phone tracking and interception is easier.
A cell phone can be turned on without the knowledge of customer.
A cell phone can be cloned by anybody so that one pretend himself
to be genuine.
Phones cannot be swapped
Cell phone working
When a call is done through cell phone four important components
Radio frequencies with the help of two separate channels one for
voice and another for control signalling information.
Electronic Serial Number (ESN)
Mobile Identification Number(MIN)
Station Class mark(SCM)
Cell phone working(Cont..)
After receiving this ESN and MIN, cell service provider verifies them
with their genuine subscriber list.
If this pair is genuine then a control signal is generated and permits the
customer to make the call.
The successfully registering this way is known as Anonymous
Cell Phone Cloning
Cell phone cloning is copying the identity of one mobile phone to another mobile
Process of taking the programmed information that is stored in a legitimate mobile
phone and illegally programming the identical information into another mobile
Thus, "cloned" phone can make and receive anonymous calls and the charges for
those calls are billed to the legitimate subscriber.
The service provider network does not have a way to differentiate between the
legitimate phone and the "cloned" phone.
Alteration of EPROM that help to configure ESN/MIN via software
By sniffing or hacking cell phone service provider, ESN/MIN data is retrieved by hackers
during anonymous registration. These are used to make calls by cloner even while the
actual user makes a call.
Number Assignment Module(NAM): It’s the EPROM which stores ESN and MIN. NAM
characteristics is cloned during a call
Station Class Mark(SCM)
System IDentification for Home System(SIDH): Part of NAM module that can be
changed to decide where the billing has to be forwarded.12/13/2015 11
Operator knows if there is same ESN/MIN combinations are traced from
different places. If so happens operator should switch off all phones having
Frequent checking of monthly bills
Distance is another important factor to identify threats.
Radio Frequency Fingerprinting(RFF)
Cellular Authentication and Voice Encryption(CAVE) security protocols
Try to avoid cell phones in busy traffic areas because there is a chance of monitoring calls
by hackers using a scanner , which registers the frequency in which mobile phones operate
in its immediate surroundings.
User authentication using Personal Identification Number(PIN): secret numeric password
between user and MSC.
Pattern recognition techniques: used to classify the cell phone according to their usage logs.
Such logs contain the relevant characteristics for every call made by the user. From this, it
is easier to identify if a call does not correspond to the patterns of a specific user .
Pattern Recognition techniques are used by the Mat Lab tool employment.
Advices for subscribers as a sign of caution includes:
Difficulty in placing outgoing calls
Difficulty in retrieving voice mail messages
Incoming calls constantly receiving busy signals or wrong numbers
Frequent wrong number phone calls
Unusual calls appearing on phone bills
Existing cellular systems have a number of potential weaknesses that need to be
Awareness and a few sensible precautions will stop these criminal activities to an
Keep in mind that technique which is safe today can be the most unsecured one
So it’s important to check function of a security system once a year and update it
or replace it
International Journal of Computer Applications(0975-8887), Volume 45-No.21,May 2012
International Journal of advances in computing & communications, Volume 1, 2013
Murphy, C. (2009). The fraternal clone method for CDMA cell phones. Small Scale Digital
DeviceForensicsJournal, 3(1). Available from
Chris Bennett, Challenges of Mobile Security, SearchCIO.com, TechTarget, December 17,
Spread spectrum access methods for wireless communications. R. Kohno, R. Meidan, and L.
Milstein, IEEE Communication Magazine, Jan. 1995.