In The Lab: SIM Reader

Adafruit Industries sent us one of their SIM Reader kits a few weeks ago to test. Assembly was a breeze thanks to the through hole components and good documentation. We plugged it into our USB -> RS232 converter and tried out the provided pySimReader software. It worked fine, but our modern SIM card out of an N95 didn’t prove very interesting. It was too new to attempt cloning and being a smart phone it doesn’t rely on the SIM for storing anything unless you specifically tell it to. The story was the same for a SIM we pulled out of a Treo. We tried the device with [Dejan]’s SimScan and a copy of Woron Scan. Both worked without any issue. Conclusion: the device works great despite us lacking anything interesting to do with it.

7 thoughts on “In The Lab: SIM Reader

  1. if you’re lacking anything interesting to do with a sim reader try deleting/wiping the phone dialing history and see if you can still look up the last dialed numbers via the sim. iphones, for example, act this way.

  2. i bought and assembled one at HOPE but my blackberry doesnt store anything on the sim. A $20 at&t go phone from walmart allowed me to read the phonebook but the txtmsgs werent able to be read

  3. Unless you’re really keen on soldering, it’s cheaper and quicker to buy one of the generic USB SIM readers. I got one from eBay for £1.50 ($3 or so). It just appears as a serial device in Linux (ttyUSB*), and it works fine with pysimreader.

    Like the author, though, I was quickly left wondering, ‘now what?’

  4. See, i live in belgium and we can keep our simcards when we switch mobiles phones (its a law so that you dont need to sign a contract or get a additional monthly fee to use the phone we have free operator choice)

    I know someone that has cloned his card many times and has unlocked various blocked features, some operators even store some numbers youre not even supposed to be able to call.

  5. There actually more than one SIM system/version I understand and many readers are not completely compatible with all versions, I’m not on the up on the details but I saw it mentioned on the packaging of a reader once, so perhaps there’s more on those smartphone cards than this reader can show? Just a thought.

  6. 3G SIM cards out in Australia are significantly different from the GSM ones we’ve had for years now. Different carriers and such all use different tech with different encryption on board, etc.’

    And uh yeah. DealExtreme has these and I haven’t bought one cause there’s not much to do with them. Probably someone will come up with something then overnight they’ll be out of stock.

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