Citizen Engineer is an online video series about open source hardware, electronics, art and hacking. The first video debuted at “The Last HOPE” conference today in New York City. Volume 1is about phones: SIM card & payphone hacking.  Learn how a SIM card works (the small card inside GSM cell phones) make a SIM card reader, view deleted messages, phone book entries and clone/crack a SIM card. Modify a “retired” payphone so it can be used as a home telephone and for VoIP (Skype). Then learn how to modify the hacked payphone so it accepts quarters – and lastly, use a Redbox to make “free phone” calls from the modified coin-accepting payphone…

Around the 12 minute mark it gets really exciting.

HD version @ Vimeo for close ups of all the soldering action or view the gallery photos.

Simreader Lrg
Want to build your own SIM card reader? The SIM card reader/writer is available at Adafruit Industries, it is for experimentation and investigation of SIM & Smart cards. Once the kit is built, accompanying software can be used to read and write from the card. Together they can be used to backup stored SIM card data, recover deleted SMS’s and phone contacts, examine the last 10 phone numbers dialed, etc. (Despite being called a SIM reader, it can also write to SIM cards). Source, schematics and software included.