saravade (saravade) wrote,

SIM Card Cloning and Cops in India

Bruce Schneier blogs about the discovery of cloned SIM cards in Assam and attributes the surprise and the lack of expertise on the part of the police to his favourite theme of the 'Ill Effects of Banning Security Research.' Apparently, an expert from IIT Guwahati said that no one has actually done any research on SIM card cloning because the activity is illegal in the country. The assumption about the lack of expertise is simply not true: one can find a detailed, one-year old post online about cloning cards of the various Indian telecom operators. Indian Express wrote about cloning in February 2005.

In 2005-06, when I used to work in NASSCOM, we did several training programmes for police officers which started with the demonstration of SIM cloning. The idea was to catch their attention and then talk of the various kinds of cyber crimes. It used to work well, but applications of such cloning were difficult to cite. Finally, a real life situation turns up where a terrorism suspect has used cloned cards. It would be interesting to find out what advantages he saw in doing so.

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