Rooting SIM cards presented at BlackHatUSA 2013

by Karsten Nohl,

Summary : SIM cards are among the most widely-deployed computing platforms with over 7 billion cards in active use. Little is known about their security beyond manufacturer claims.
Besides SIM cards’ main purpose of identifying subscribers, most of them provide programmable Java runtimes. Based on this flexibility, SIM cards are poised to become an easily extensible trust anchor for otherwise untrusted smartphones, embedded devices, and cars.
The protection pretense of SIM cards is based on the understanding that they have never been exploited. This talk ends this myth of unbreakable SIM cards and illustrates that the cards -- like any other computing system -- are plagued by implementation and configuration bugs.