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Re: NSA spying: What's the best phone encryption & IMEI random number generator?
On Tue, 10 Sep 2013 09:15:23 -0700, Jeff Liebermann wrote:

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Hi Jeff,

In practice, at least in the Santa Cruz mountains, both AT&T and T-Mobile  
work just fine no matter what phone you stick their SIM cards into.


Re: NSA spying: What's the best phone encryption & IMEI random number generator?
On Tue, 10 Sep 2013 09:15:23 -0700, Jeff Liebermann wrote:

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Hi Jeff,

Let's be clear about the details here ... :)

AT&T *certainly* tacks on a data plan, even if you have a data block.  
They say it's to ensure you have a consistent bill; but they're lying  
since they allow you to have a data block by SIM card, so there is no way  
you can get charged for data accidentally. They lie.

Verizon may have followed suit (I don't know); but certainly T-Mobile has  
not.

I know this inside and out. T-Mobile will allow you to have ANY phone,  
without data. They don't care if you bought the phone on your own (or if  
it's a pay-as-you-go phone).

Now, if you bought a subsidized contract phone, then yes, T-Mobile also  
requires data until your contract runs out. But the easy way around this  
is to just buy an unsubsidized or pay-as-you-go subsidized phone.


Re: NSA spying: What's the best phone encryption & IMEI random number generator?
On Tue, 10 Sep 2013 08:35:14 +0000, Casper H.S. Dik wrote:

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Exactly.  

With T-Mobile, you can (and I do) switch phones at will, and there are  
zero negative repercussions.

With AT&T, the only disadvantage is their practice of forcing you to have  
a data plan, whether you want it or not - for phones with certain IMEI  
numbers.

For that reason alone, it's useful to be able to switch IMEI numbers,  
although one could easily argue that this is a circumvention of the  
service contract.

I'm no lawyer, but, I wonder how that plays in court though, as all you  
want it NOT to have a data plan, so, it can't be argued that you're using  
a service and not paying for it.

On the contrary, with AT&T, you're being charged for a service you don't  
even want, simply because of a random IMEI number having been "targeted"  
by AT&T as being of a phone smart enough to make use of data.  

Seems illegal to me but I'm not a lawyer - and - that's the whole reason  
I dropped AT&T in favor of T-Mobile in the first place.


Re: NSA spying: What's the best phone encryption & IMEI random number generator?
On Mon, 09 Sep 2013 19:19:55 -0700, Jeff Liebermann wrote:

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Hi Jeff,
In practice, at least with both AT&T and T-Mobile, you can swap your SIM  
card into as many phones as you like, and they'll all work. AT&T requires  
you to "tell" them what your IMEI number is initially and T-Mobile  
doesn't even ask what the IMEI number is. Either way, you can still swap  
the SIM card into as many phones as you like, and they don't care (from  
an account-identification purpose).

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Hmmm... I've moved my SIM card to a whole bunch of phones, over the  
years, and within my family, I swap SIM cards among phones, and I teach  
my kids how to call me from their friends' phones when their batteries  
are dead, simply by swapping the SIM card. So, in practice, the only  
thing that's difficult is switching carriers; not switching phones.

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This added "data" fee is only done by AT&T. T-Mobile has no such  
automatic data fee. That fee is the reason I dropped AT&T in favor of T-
Mobile in the first place, so, I know this inside and out. There are so  
many misconceptions revolving around the IMEI.

I don't claim to be an expert, but, at least with T-Mobile, the IMEI is  
(nearly) meaningless; and it's only meaningful from the standpoint of  
charging you extra by AT&T.


Re: NSA spying: What's the best phone encryption & IMEI random number generator?

I can tell you for UMA, they need the IMEI. I bought an unlocked phone  
and could not UMA until T-mob had the IMEI.

The phone call itself uses the IMSI, TMSI, and sometimes P-TMSI. I'm not  
sure it used the IMEI. The system works hard not to put on the IMEI.  
That is what the TMEI is for.

Depending on my much you know about your phone, you can get these  
numbers. My TMSI and P-TMSI are 8 hex digits.

Looking at my IMSI, the first 6 digits are obvious:
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I can read out just about any number my phone uses. I can also read the  
simcard. However, putting this stuff out on the internet..well...



Re: NSA spying: What's the best phone encryption & IMEI random number generator?
On Sun, 08 Sep 2013 20:32:54 -0700, miso wrote:

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I had to look up what "UMA" is:
 http://www.mobileburn.com/definition.jsp?term=UMA

Is this summary correct?
 UMA stands for 'unlicensed mobile access', which,  
 as far as I can tell, simply means the phone can  
 switch from WiFi (or Bluetooth) to GSM (or CDMA)  
 and back, while making phone calls.

Since I have T-Mobile, the IMEI might matter because
T-Mobile has to, somehow, "enable" my phone to switch
between WiFi/Bluetooth and GSM.

But, that's a second-order issue. I'll first see if I  
can change my IMEI number by the suggested method.

Once I change it, I can tell if there are any unexpected
side effects.


Re: NSA spying: What's the best phone encryption & IMEI random number generator?
On 9/8/2013 9:19 PM, Misha wrote:
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UMA and wifi calling need security out the wazoo. Essentially you are  
letting someone uses the services of a particular customer. Spoofing is  
not a good thing if you protecting your customer's security.

There are certificates involved.

Re: NSA spying: What's the best phone encryption & IMEI random number generator?
On Sun, 08 Sep 2013 20:32:54 -0700, miso wrote:

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I wouldn't doubt that the NSA has *every* nntp poster identified; and,  
if they cared, they can correlate each of our posts to our cellphones
(and other identifying metadata) at the click of a button.

Luckily, the keyword for 99.99% of us is "if they cared", as if they did,
we'd be dead as OBL.


Re: NSA spying: What's the best phone encryption & IMEI random number generator?

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It is also not correct.

However, in a number of countries stolen handsets will be registered and
the operators will refuse service to stolen handsets.

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You shouldn';t be able to change your IMEI but only because you shouldn't
change the serial number (so it is pointless to have it stolen)  Except, of
course, many stolen handsets are exported.

Casper

Re: NSA spying: What's the best phone encryption & IMEI random number generator?
On Mon, 09 Sep 2013 08:54:09 +0000, Casper H.S. Dik wrote:

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First off, nobody here is talking about stolen handsets; and secondly
we're talking about the USA only (at least I was).

Regarding stolen handsets in the usa, my handset was stolen (well,  
actually, I left it in a cafe, but someone took it) and the telco  
did absolutely nothing about it.

And, as I said from the start, in the USA, it's not illegal to change the  
IMEI (probably for the same reason that they do nothing about stolen  
handsets).

Anyway, I got my answers on how to change the IMEI and I'm working on the  
details. Thanks.

As for the encryption - the answers were good - but too deep for me.


Re: NSA spying: What's the best phone encryption & IMEI random number generator?
On 9/9/2013 5:42 AM, Misha wrote:
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Try dealing with a carrier to return a phone you found. They have zero  
interest. Every phone I found I returned by calling the recent phone  
numbers until I found someone who knew the owner.

I never found a locked phone.



Re: NSA spying: What's the best phone encryption & IMEI random number generator?
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I called "hubby" from the directory and when someone answered, I said "I
think I have your wife's phone".

Another phone that I found had a dead battery, so I took it to the proper
company store.  They wouldn't even plug in a charger, and had no interest
at all in finding the owner.

Same thing with a working iPod.  Apple had no interest in finding the
owner.

--  
Clarence A Dold - Hidden Valley Lake, CA, USA  GPS: 38.8,-122.5

Re: NSA spying: What's the best phone encryption & IMEI random number generator?
On Sun, 08 Sep 2013 14:26:27 -0700, Jeff Liebermann wrote:

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Hi Jeff,

Again, I don't understand any of these statements for the same reason
as before - yet I highly respect your opinion. That's why I'm confused.

The only thing the telco cares about is the SIM card.  

They don't care what phone you put it in. So, for example, if I borrowed
your phone, and put my SIM card in it, then I'd have the same service
as if I had that same SIM card in my cell phone.  

The IMEI number was immaterial to the phone company (yes, I know it's
transmitted to them - but it's meaningless to them from the standpoint
of my service). [Yes, I know about the AT&T policy of smartphones having
to have a data plan - that's a *policy* issue that only clouds the issue
so let's ignore that unless it actually matters, bearing in mind that  
T-Mobile doesn't have that problem so it's not a technical issue.]

And, the argument that you have to have a "similar" IMEI number was used
for MAC address changing also - but it's really statistically a weak
argument. I doubt it would ever matter *what* IMEI number you used, since
the chance of actually colliding with another duplicate IMEI is  
vanishingly small. Let's say I'd have a better chance of winning the  
lottery, so, IMEI collisions are a tiny issue that can easily be averted  
but since the chances are so slim, they're not even worth the effort.

And, while my argument has nothing to do with stolen phones, it's my  
understanding that in the USA, there is no stolen phone list. Certainly  
I've had *my* phone stolen (well, ok, I left it on a cafe table and it
was gone when I returned) - and the telcos did absolutely NOTHING about
it except replace my SIM card. So I don't think, in the USA, matching  
an IMEI of a stolen phone is also something to worry about.

The thing that confuses me is that the IMEI is nearly meaningless from
the standpoint of the contract between the owner and his telco. I, for  
one, have a SIM card from T-Moblie, and they just shipped me that SIM  
card. That's it. I never gave them *any* IMEI, and I used that SIM card  
in multiple phones. They never cared.

The *only* effect, it seems to me, of randomizing the IMEI, is to keep  
the NSA off base, in that their meta data will be off by a tiny amount.
Of course, if they were DIRECTLY observing me (which I hope they're not,  
then that slight inconsistency would be meaningless); but if they're  
on a fishing expedition, if EVERYONE changed their IMEI daily, it would
benefit us all, by adding just one more level of privacy to our daily
intrusions.

phones


Re: NSA spying: What's the best phone encryption & IMEI random number generator?
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I recall Jeff saying something like:
Verizon/Sprint/USCelluar CDMA phones don't have SIMs.

--  
Clarence A Dold - Hidden Valley Lake, CA, USA  GPS: 38.8,-122.5

Re: NSA spying: What's the best phone encryption & IMEI random number generator?
On Mon, 09 Sep 2013 04:13:26 +0000, dold wrote:

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Thanks. Since I'm GSM, I wholly missed the part about CDMA needing the  
IMEI number. Reading his story of how he got in trouble with them, I  
couldn't fathom how T-Mobile would have a similar problem.

Now I realize that, for CDMA, the IMEI might matter a lot.  

Luckily, I'm on GSM; so the IMEI is (apparently) nearly meaningless from  
the standpoint of the carrier figuring out whether or not to supply  
service to me.  

They get all that from the SIM card information, not from the IMEI.
Which leaves me to change the IMEI at will.

Of course, now that I realize all this, changing the IMEI might not give  
me the obscurity from the NSA that I desire, simply because the SIM card  
will just as easily uniquely identify me.

Sigh. (as I slam my tinfoil hat down on the ground)


Re: NSA spying: What's the best phone encryption & IMEI random number generator?
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  It depends *how* 'meaningless' "nearly meaningless" *really* is.

  For example, as (IIRC) Jeff said, from the IMEI your provider knows
which exact phone model you're using.

  If I put my SIM in another phone, my (account on my) provider's
website will show which brand and model phone I'm using, while I've
never told them. They will also send the messages to configure the
Internet and MMS setup of the phone, which (AFAIK) are brand/model
dependent.

  So a forged/bogus/unused IMEI is exactly that. Whether it's "nearly
meaningless" is up to the NSA. :-)

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Re: NSA spying: What's the best phone encryption & IMEI random number generator?
On Mon, 09 Sep 2013 20:08:55 +0000, Frank Slootweg wrote:

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True.  

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I do this all the time.  

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Yup. I see these messages all the time when I put my SIM card into a  
different cellphone. I ignore the messages.

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Well, a forged/bogus IMEI isn't any different, in my case, than simply  
sticking my (T-Mobile) SIM card into a different phone with a legit IMEI.

Same thing - for practical purposes.


Re: NSA spying: What's the best phone encryption & IMEI random number generator?
On Sun, 08 Sep 2013 14:26:27 -0700, Jeff Liebermann wrote:

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Just to reiterate, one of my cellular providers (T-Mobile) doesn't give
one whit about the IMEI and doesn't make any statements in the contract
regarding what phone I use.

The other (AT&T) does care, if only to gouge me for a data plan (which
I never wanted and never needed).

But certainly it's not illegal (in the US) to change your IMEI number
daily. So I watched that you-tube you referenced with interest.

Unfortunately, I'm on Android, so, I need to see if it can be transposed.


Re: NSA spying: What's the best phone encryption & IMEI random number generator?
On Sun, 08 Sep 2013 14:26:27 -0700, Jeff Liebermann wrote:

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This looks like what he did on his Android phone (with an iOS theme).

0. *#06# (reveals the old IMEI as 123456789012345 / 10)
1. root the device
2. install terminal emulation
3. start terminal application
4. su (switch to the super user)
5. echo 'AT+EGMR=1,7,"546765676567656"' > /dev/pttycmd1
6. reboot
7. *#06# (reveals the new IMEI as 546765676567656 / 10)

Seems simple enough. Thanks.


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