What is 2G, 3G, 4G?

Introduction With all the recent fuss over 4G / LTE.  Pentura thought a nice blog post highlighting the changes and developments of mobile infrastructure would be interesting for our readers.  Below is a high-level description of the 2G, 3G, 3G-Femto and finally 4G networks. 2G 2G (GSM/GPRS) is the initial backbone for all mobile infrastructure.  At the front end it comprises of a Radio Tower (BTS) , and the Base…

Global Tracking of People via Mobile Networks

Introduction A recent client was concerned that their Directors were being tracked and their location (Country) was being published and updated regularly on a stalker website.  The website contained the Company name, Directors name, and the name of the Country they currently resided in followed by the Country’s flag.  The question arose; How are they tracking us? Initial thoughts were that something quite simple or trivial was happening such as…

What is SIGTRAN? SS7? SCTP?

Introduction SIGTRAN is the name, derived from signaling transport, of the former Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) working group that produced specifications for a family of protocols that provide reliable Datagram service and user layer adaptations for Signaling System 7 (SS7) and ISDN communications. The SIGTRAN protocols are an extension of the SS7 protocol family. It supports the same application and call management paradigms as SS7 but uses an Internet Protocol (IP) transport called Stream Control Transmission Protocol (SCTP). Indeed,…

Sim Cloning

Introduction SIM cloning is the process in which a legitimate SIM card is duplicated. When the cloning is completed, the cloned SIM card’s identifying information is transferred onto a separate, secondary SIM card. The secondary card can then be used in a different phone while having all calls and associated charges attributed to the original SIM card. The phrase SIM clone is often used to refer to the SIM card that has been successfully…

SDR – ADS-B Decoding: dump1090 (Linux/OSX)

Previously, I covered RTL1090 to observe ADS-B signals on the Microsoft Windows Operating System. In this post post I will walk you through the simple operation of the Linux & OSX equivalent dump1090.  This Open-Source package performs just as good as its Windows counterpart, maybe even better as no additional mapping software is necessary. Source Code git clone https://github.com/antirez/dump1090.git

SDR – ADS-B Decoding: RTL1090 (Windows)

RTL1090 is  a program that will automatically decode ADS-B signals that are commonly found on the 1090MHz frequency.  Alternatively known as Mode S, ADS-B allows a variety of types of data to be sent from the transponder, including: ICAO aircraft code (the tail number of the plane can be obtained from this) Flight Number Altitude Location (Longitude and Latitude) Heading Using this software on Windows from the picture above we can…

SDR: Ham It Up!

I want to bring your attention to the Ham It up v2.1 a high-quality RF (MF, HF) converter for Software Defined Radio (SDR) devices like the RTL-SDR DVB units and the Funcube dongle.  I personally believe its the best SDR upconverter currently available.  They’ve  even added a noise source circuit; However, you need to source a few extra components to complete the circuit. Why use an up-convertor? The RTL2383 + Elonics E4000-based DVB-T tuner…

Gnuradio – OSX Installation Guide

I briefly mentioned previously about using gnu radio on Linux or OSX.  Today I will walkthough the installation process on OSX. First install MacPorts if you have not already done so: http://www.macports.org. First install the rtl-sdr drivers: port install gr-osmosdr Now the latest version of gnuradio uses variants: port info gnuradio Password: gnuradio @3.7.1 (science, comms) Sub-ports: gnuradio-devel, gnuradio-next Variants: debug, docs, full, grc, jack, orc, portaudio, python26, [+]python27, qtgui, sdl, swig,…

SDR : Software Defined Radio

Recently, I’ve been busy playing with Software Defined Radio (SDR).  I was able to get my hands on one of these cheap TV dongles with the Realtek 2832U Chipset.  So what’s the big deal? A V4L/DVB kernel developer  Antti Palosaar, discovered that the chip allows transferring the raw I/Q samples to the host, which is officially used for DAB/DAB+/FM demodulation.The RTL2832U outputs 8-bit I/Q-samples, and the highest theoretically possible sample-rate is…