Looking to make a duplicate of your SIM card? It’s nice to have a backup of your phonebook, SMS, and other things stored on a SIM card. But we have to give you three suggestions. First, it’s much easier to use online backups or install a third-party app and extract the data that way. Secondly, if your goal is to spy on someone’s activity, there are better alternatives – intricate but very advanced apps and web services. Thirdly, not all SIM cards can be cloned, as you’ll see below. If you acknowledge that and still want to continue, here’s how to clone a SIM card.
What is required to clone a SIM card?
Before going any further, you need to know that SIM cards are manufactured using three algorithms:
- COMP128v1: Oldest (manufactured around 2000-2005). These are the only type of SIM cards that can be reliably duplicated fully.
- COMP128v2: Too advanced, although you might extract some information.
- COMP128v3: Same as above.
These are things you will need to make a SIM card duplicate:
- Access to a Windows computer.
- Physical access to the target SIM card.
- At least one blank programmable SIM card (It will have no IMSI or Ki number). You can get it here, for example. You’ll likely have to buy a minimum of 5 regardless.
- Physical SIM card reader. It will use a USB port to connect, for example, this one.
- Install the required software and follow a set of steps.
Use MOBILedit SIM Cloning Tool (Quick method)
This method has some limitations. It’s intended for forensic investigation and creating backups, so the cloned SIM card cannot connect to a network. However, you can modify the ICCID and IMSI code on it, format the card, or access some data, such as contacts or SMS, call history, voicemail recordings, sent photos, and videos via MMS, … If you are fine with that, here’s what to do.
Prepare the following:
- The USB SIM card reader/writer.
- A blank programmable card. In this case, order them from MOBILedit. There are 2 as part of their Connection Kit, as well as their branded SIM Card Writer. If you don’t need the rest of the cables, you can ask for these products separately by contacting their support.
- When that arrives, download and install the MOBILedit! SIM Clone tool.
- Remove the SIM card you want to duplicate.
Here’s how the SIM cloning process works:
- At the bottom side (opposite of the USB connector) use your fingers to open the SIM card slot. Insert the original SIM card. You might have to find the plastic rim it came with if you punched out a micro-SIM or a nano-SIM card. Your SIM card reader most likely uses a mini-SIM card slot as MOBILedit’s reader does.
- Connect the reader to your computer by plugging it into the USB slot.
- Run the software.
- Select the USB drive at the top (under SIM Card Reader:) if it isn’t chosen by default.
- Check the boxes in front of Phonebook, Messages, and Others.
- Click on the Read SIM button.
- Don’t unplug the SIM card reader, but remove the original SIM card by opening the tray without exiting the software.
- Punch out a fitting SIM card size from the blank full-size SIM card you purchased. Insert it into the SIM card slot, and close the SIM tray.
- Optional. You can uncheck some of the boxes if you don’t want that data to transfer over.
- Click the Write SIM button, which was greyed out previously.
- When it says Write operation FINISHED under Status, you can click on Close.
- You just cloned the data on the SIM card successfully.
- Important. If the SIM card is PIN-protected, only the ICCID and IMSI can be copied.
Use MagicSIM and USB SIM Card Reader (Long method)
This is a more advanced method, but also more comprehensive. If the card can be cracked and cloned, you will be able to use it to its full potential. That means both SIM cards will receive texts and calls, although only one can be in an active call at a time.
Here are things you need to prepare for the process:
- A USB SIM card firmware reader/writer.
- A programmable blank SIM card.
- The original SIM card.
- Your SIM card must be unlocked.
- Download and install MagicSIM. Make sure to install the drivers.
- Download and install the USB SIM Card Reader. Install the drivers if offered.
Follow this guide to clone a SIM card:
- Place the SIM card you want to duplicate into the card reader, and plug it in.
- Open MagicSIM and click Conn in the upper left corner, or the SIM Card menu, then select Connect.
- The data in the menu on the left will auto-fill.
- Click on Crack in the menu at the top.
- Click the circle in front of Strong mode, then click Start.
- The software will start cracking the Ki code, which is typically 32-numbers long. This can potentially last a few hours!
- Once it’s cracked, save the file (it will have a .dat extension) anywhere you want.
- Important. Click Disconn (or SIM Card menu, then Disconnect).
- Remove the SIM card from the card reader. You can also unplug it.
- Insert the blank SIM card into the reader and plug it in again.
- Open the USB SIM Card Reader software and click Connect.
- In the Please select the Card Reader type... window, refer to the card reader you bought when selecting its technology – PC/SC or Phoenix.
- Press OK.
- You will see a message: No Info Found.
- Select the Write to SIM option.
- A window will pop. Select the .dat file you previously saved and click Open.
- Click on Start to begin and give it some time to finish.
- Optional. If you didn’t unlock your SIM card it will also ask you for a security code required to remove the carrier/region lock.
- Your SIM card is now a clone of the SIM card you originally inserted. Test it out!