IMSI-catcher

IMSI catchercatchersIMSI catchersIMSI number catchers
An international mobile subscriber identity-catcher, or IMSI-catcher, is a telephone eavesdropping device used for intercepting mobile phone traffic and tracking location data of mobile phone users.wikipedia
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Telephone tapping

wiretapwiretappingwiretaps
An international mobile subscriber identity-catcher, or IMSI-catcher, is a telephone eavesdropping device used for intercepting mobile phone traffic and tracking location data of mobile phone users. A virtual base transceiver station (VBTS) is a device for identifying the international mobile subscriber identity (IMSI) of a nearby GSM mobile phone and intercepting its calls.
To the mobile phones in its vicinity, a device called an "IMSI-catcher" pretends to be a legitimate base station of the mobile phone network, thus subjecting the communication between the phone and the network to a man-in-the-middle attack.

Stingray phone tracker

StingRayStingraysStingray device
Police departments have been reluctant to reveal use of these programs and contracts with vendors such as Harris Corporation, the maker of Stingray and Kingfish phone tracker devices.
The StingRay is an IMSI-catcher, a controversial cellular phone surveillance device, manufactured by Harris Corporation.

Harris Corporation

HarrisHarris SemiconductorHarris Corp.
Police departments have been reluctant to reveal use of these programs and contracts with vendors such as Harris Corporation, the maker of Stingray and Kingfish phone tracker devices.

Mobile phone jammer

jammingcell phone jammersignal-jamming equipment

Mobile phone

cell phonemobile phonesmobile
An international mobile subscriber identity-catcher, or IMSI-catcher, is a telephone eavesdropping device used for intercepting mobile phone traffic and tracking location data of mobile phone users. A virtual base transceiver station (VBTS) is a device for identifying the international mobile subscriber identity (IMSI) of a nearby GSM mobile phone and intercepting its calls.

Cell site

cell towercell towerscell phone tower
Essentially a "fake" mobile tower acting between the target mobile phone and the service provider's real towers, it is considered a man-in-the-middle (MITM) attack.

Man-in-the-middle attack

man-in-the-middleman in the middle attackman in the middle
Essentially a "fake" mobile tower acting between the target mobile phone and the service provider's real towers, it is considered a man-in-the-middle (MITM) attack.

3G

IMT-20003G networkIMT
The 3G wireless standard offers some risk mitigation due to mutual authentication required from both the handset and the network.

LTE (telecommunication)

LTE4G LTETD-LTE
However, sophisticated attacks may be able to downgrade 3G and LTE to non-LTE network services which do not require mutual authentication.

Law enforcement agency

law enforcementlaw enforcement agenciesFederal Police
IMSI-catchers are used in a number of countries by law enforcement and intelligence agencies, but their use has raised significant civil liberty and privacy concerns and is strictly regulated in some countries such as under the German Strafprozessordnung (StPO / Code of Criminal Procedure).

Intelligence agency

intelligence agenciesintelligence serviceintelligence
IMSI-catchers are used in a number of countries by law enforcement and intelligence agencies, but their use has raised significant civil liberty and privacy concerns and is strictly regulated in some countries such as under the German Strafprozessordnung (StPO / Code of Criminal Procedure).

Base transceiver station

BTSbase stationbase stations
A virtual base transceiver station (VBTS) is a device for identifying the international mobile subscriber identity (IMSI) of a nearby GSM mobile phone and intercepting its calls.

International mobile subscriber identity

IMSIE.212service-subscriber key (IMSI)
A virtual base transceiver station (VBTS) is a device for identifying the international mobile subscriber identity (IMSI) of a nearby GSM mobile phone and intercepting its calls.

Rohde & Schwarz

Lothar RohdeRohde and SchwarzDigital Video Systems
It was patented and first commercialized by Rohde & Schwarz in 2003.

Court of Appeal (England and Wales)

Court of AppealCourt of Appeal of England and WalesEnglish Court of Appeal
The device can be viewed as simply a modified cell tower with a malicious operator, and on 4 January 2012, the Court of Appeal of England and Wales held that the patent is invalid for obviousness.

Inventive step and non-obviousness

inventive stepobviousnessinventive
The device can be viewed as simply a modified cell tower with a malicious operator, and on 4 January 2012, the Court of Appeal of England and Wales held that the patent is invalid for obviousness.

Base station

base stationsWireless base stationradio base station
The IMSI catcher masquerades as a base station and logs the IMSI numbers of all the mobile stations in the area, as they attempt to attach to the IMSI-catcher.

Mobile station

MSmobile equipment
The IMSI catcher masquerades as a base station and logs the IMSI numbers of all the mobile stations in the area, as they attempt to attach to the IMSI-catcher.

Search warrant

warrantsearch warrantswarrantless search
IMSI-catchers are often deployed by court order without a search warrant, the lower judicial standard of a pen register and trap-and-trace order being preferred by law enforcement.

Pen register

Pen Register ActDNRPen Registers
IMSI-catchers are often deployed by court order without a search warrant, the lower judicial standard of a pen register and trap-and-trace order being preferred by law enforcement.

Scottish Prison Service

HM Prisonpolice cellsPrison Board of Scotland
In the UK, the first public body to admit using IMSI catchers was the Scottish Prison Service, though it is likely that the Metropolitan Police Service has been using IMSI catchers since 2011 or before.

Metropolitan Police Service

Metropolitan PoliceLondon Metropolitan PoliceMetropolitan Police Force
In the UK, the first public body to admit using IMSI catchers was the Scottish Prison Service, though it is likely that the Metropolitan Police Service has been using IMSI catchers since 2011 or before.

SIM card

SIMSubscriber Identity ModuleSIM cards
With the help of a SIM, it simultaneously logs into the GSM network as a mobile station.

GSM

Global System for Mobile CommunicationsGSM networkGSM (850/900/1800/1900)
A virtual base transceiver station (VBTS) is a device for identifying the international mobile subscriber identity (IMSI) of a nearby GSM mobile phone and intercepting its calls.

UMTS

WCDMAW-CDMATD-SCDMA
To provide a high network coverage, the UMTS standard allows for inter-operation with GSM.