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snifing phone messages

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  • 2 months later...

Yes you can, but you need an antenna for the specified frequency. Some standards are encrypted, so you won't be able to read the traffic, but you'll be able to capture it. You will probably need an HackRF, because no RTL-SDR receives in the 850/1900 Mhz bands used by GSM. IIRC, 2G uses a weak encyption protocol, so you could probably crack it with a good enough GPU in under an hour with Hashcat. 3G is a bit better, and you  won't be cracking 4G unless you have a LOT of processing power. 

You can read up on an attack done around 2010 at CCC Here

Edit: After looking around a bit more myself, I found this. It looks like you can sniff GSM with RTL-SDR. Go figure. 

Edited by GarrukApex
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  • 1 month later...
On 11/21/2017 at 7:34 PM, Harold Finch said:

Hi. Im searching for sniffing any phones sms messaging. But I just find it is possibe with some phones (Samsung S5, S6, Note). Can I sniff any phones with RTL-SDR antenna & wireshark?

i am interested in your method for doing such advanced projects with the hackRF ?  what specific OS were you using? was it possible through a virtual machine?  If your interested in explaining your research i would love to have a read.


Thank You.

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I was reading about this kind of attack years ago.


what I understand.

If you broadcast a older protocol that has a weaker encryption, if the signal is stronger the device will connect. Unless this device is manually configured not to use backwards compatible protocols it should connect.


It might have been 2g or 1x. I don't remember. 


I would be interested in seing some one build and document this.

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