AdaptiveMobile Security provides the industry’s most comprehensive mobile threat defence and intelligence capabilities


A SIM card flaw, discovered being actively exploited in the wild, which allows attackers to hijack any phone just by sending it an SMS message..


AdaptiveMobile Security have uncovered a new and previously undetected vulnerability andassociated exploits, called Simjacker. This vulnerability is currently being actively exploited bya specific private company that works with governments to monitor individuals.“Simjacker” and its associated exploits is a huge jump in complexity and sophisticationcompared to attacks previously seen over mobile core networks. The main Simjacker attackinvolves an SMS containing a specific type of spyware-like code being sent to a mobile phone,which then instructs the SIM Card within the phone to ‘take over’ the mobile phone to retrieveand perform sensitive commands. The location information of thousands of devices wasobtained over time without the knowledge or consent of the targeted mobile phone users.During the attack, the user is completely unaware that they received the attack, thatinformation was retrieved, and that it was successfully exfiltrated. However the Simjackerattack can, and has been extended further to perform additional types of attacks.Simjacker has been further exploited to perform many other types of attacks againstindividuals and mobile operators such as fraud, scam calls, information leakage, denial ofservice and espionage. AdaptiveMobile Security Threat Intelligence analysts observed thehackers vary their attacks, testing many of these further exploits. In theory, all makes andmodels of mobile phone are open to attack as the vulnerability is linked to a technologyembedded on SIM cards. The Simjacker vulnerability could extend to over 1 billion mobilephone users globally, potentially impacting countries in the Americas, West Africa, Europe,Middle East and indeed any region of the world where this SIM card technology is in use.We are quite confident that this exploit has been developed by a specific private company thatworks with governments to monitor individuals. AdaptiveMobile Security has been workingclosely with their customers and the wider industry; including both mobile network operatorsand SIM card manufacturers to protect mobile phone subscribers. We have blocked attacksand are committed to using our global threat intelligence to build defences against these newsophisticated attacks that are circumventing current security measures.

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A Spy in Our Pocket

Mobile Handset Privacy: Measuring The Data iOSand Android Send to Apple And Google

Douglas J. Leith

School of Computer Science & Statistics,

Trinity College Dublin, Ireland

25thMarch, 2021

Abstract—We investigate what data iOS on an iPhone shareswith Apple and what data Google Android on a Pixel phoneshares with Google. We find that even when minimally configuredand the handset is idle both iOS and Google Android sharedata with Apple/Google on average every 4.5 mins. The phoneIMEI, hardware serial number, SIM serial number and IMSI,handset phone number etc are shared with Apple and Google.Both iOS and Google Android transmit telemetry, despite theuser explicitly opting out of this. When a SIM is inserted bothiOS and Google Android send details to Apple/Google. iOS sendsthe MAC addresses of nearby devices, e.g. other handsets andthe home gateway, to Apple together with their GPS location.Users have no opt out from this and currently there are few, ifany, realistic options for preventing this data sharing.