Geographically locating phone numbers

Well this isn’t as nice as my last post about Geographically locating ip addresses but still this is highly interesting specially with all the LBS(Location Based Services) that are going on. LBS are usually based on companies and/or software which has extreme access to information able to pin point the location of a person. These techniques are often used when performing somebody is beeing investigated or when someone makes a distress call to 911(112 in europe). Before you carry on reading I highly apreciate feedback about my english writing :) so don’t be ashamed to correct me or tell me about any errors in my postings. I regret that this post isn’t as detailed as I wanted it to be…but then again I hate keeping information to myself for ages. So here is a first glance at this topic.

The main problem about this topic is explaining it without compromising a real phone number and causing that a real person would be stalked. Example traces will be done on a real phone number but  for the sake of simplicity I will use the following number through out the blog posting: 00 31 (0)6 123 123 12

Suppose you receive the above phone number and the question belonging to it would be: where is the person belonging to this number located? Well first of all operator triangulation and trojans are out of the question…since those methods require a lot more effort usually.

The following website is my favorite

There are a lot more sites out there that can do what this site can…but I assume everyone knows how to use google, ones they have gotten a few pointers in the right direction. I specially like this site because of the no nonsens approach and the ease of use(yes I’m promoting it, no I do NOT get any financial gain out of it). The output of the website can be any of the following depending on a few technical conditions:

  • The phone with number +31612312312 is currently located in Netherlands.
    • Operated by: KPN Telecom in Netherlands)
  • The phone with number +31612312312 is currently located in Netherlands.
    • Operated by: Dutchtone in Netherlands)
  • The phone with number +31612312312 is currently located in Australia or Christmas/Cocos.
    • Operated by: Vodafone in Australia)
  • The phone with number +31612312312 is currently located in Spain.
    • Operated by: Movistar (Telefonica) in Spain)

So how does the website work or better yet what is the technique behind it?  As usual wikipedia seems to have a pretty good answer:

The above articles give a pretty broad explanation so here is the detailed paper which was first presented at the CCC Congres and one more wikipedia link on the protocol used to locate somebody his phone number.

There are some other methods out there that can be used and can be less or even more accurate then the one described above. These methods however are pretty dependent on the phone you want to trace and if you know the person or not. It also involves some phone tracing(from number to real person) so I’ll leave that for another post. For the moment beeing this is a nice toy even if you just want to trace your favorite popstar(assuming you got his/her phone number).

5 thoughts on “Geographically locating phone numbers”

  1. apreciate = appreciate

    and causing that a real person would be stalked. =
    and causing a real person to be stalked.

    through out = throughout

    no nonsens = no nonsense

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