What is Cell Phone Cloning?
Cell phone cloning, usually defined as copying the identity of one mobile phone to another mobile phone. Purpose of this is usually to make fraudulent telephone calls. The bills are thus created in the name of the legitimate subscriber. The one who clones is able to make effectively anonymous calls, which attracts other group of interested users. Cloning is defined as the process of taking the programmed information, stored in a legitimate mobile phone and illegally programs the identical information into other mobile phone. The result is that the "cloned" phone can make and receive calls and the charges for those calls are billed in the name of the legitimate subscriber. The service provider network does not have any way out to differentiate between the legitimate phone and the "cloned" phone
How is Cell Phone Cloning Done?
Cell cloning process involves modifying/replacing the EPROM (Erasable Programmable Read-Only Memory) in the phone with a new chip which allows the person to configure an ESN (Electronic serial number) via software. You also need to change the MIN (Mobile Identification Number). When you successfully change the ESN/MIN pair, your phone has an effective clone of the other phone. Cloning requires access to ESN and MIN pairs. ESN/MIN pairs are discovered in several ways. Some of them are:
Cloning works under the AMPS (Advanced Mobile Phone System)/NAMPS (Narrowband Advanced Mobile Phone Service) system, but has become popular, as older clone able phones have become more difficult to find and newer phones have not been successfully reverse-engineered. Cloning is been successfully demonstrated under GSM, but the process is very difficult.
How to Prevent Cell Phone Cloning?
The MINs and ESNs can be electronically verified to help prevent frauds. One should never use Mobile Phone for communicating or storing confidential information. Always Mobiles should be secured using a Pin for security purposes. Check that all mobile devices are covered by a security policy. Always ensure that one person is responsible for keeping tabs on who has what equipment and that they update the central register periodically.
How do service providers handle reports related to cloned cell phones?
Legitimate subscribers whose phones have been cloned will receive bills with charges for calls they didn't make. Sometimes these charges amount to several thousands of rupees in addition to the charges. Typically, the service provider will assume the cost of those additional fraudulent calls. However, to prevent the cloned phone from continuing to receive service, the service provider will terminate the legitimate phone subscription. The subscriber requires to activate a new subscription with a different phone number which requires reprogramming of the phone, along with the additional headaches that go along with phone number changes.