GSM Hacking: Not even wireless can hide from the 25C3

Runs on open source.  Srsly.

Runs on open source. Srsly.

There’s very little hiding from participants at the 25C3. They’re even working hard to shed much needed light and openness on something most of us use every day—our mobile phones!

There’s a lot of activity surrounding GSM—the Global System for Mobile communications at the 25C3. While GSM is a well documented standard used by most of the world’s mobile phones, the hardware and software it runs on are largely hidden from public view.

“Nonetheless, in recent years there are a number of different projects working on driving a wedge of openness into this world,” according to Harald Welte and Dieter Spaar, two GSM hackers behind the Running your own GSM Network talk in the Hacking track of the 25C3. They will be releasing a Free Software project implementing the GSM fixed network at the 25C3, and running a live demo call between two mobile phones on a base station using open source code.

The GSM fun at the 25C3 doesn’t stop there. Welte and Spaarare joining forces with their fellow open GSM pioneers from OpenBTS, the THC GSM project, and a few others for an ongoing, multi-project GSM Workshop. The workshop’s goals are improving the source code to help you run your own GSM network in addition to work on passive GSM scanner projects and other efforts to help open up GSM.

There’s even a special surprise! A group of GSM hackers from a certain French hackerspace will demo a mesh phone project called Bricophone. Want to find out more? You’ll just have to attend the 25C3!