Assembling your SeaGlass IMSI-catcher detector – a beginner's guide

Linus Nyman, Mikael Laakso

Research output: Other contributionF4 Model or design adopted for production/use


IMSI-catchers, sometimes called cell-site simulators or Stingrays, can eavesdrop on cell phone communications. IMSI-catchers do this by pretending to be a cell tower, thereby tricking nearby cell phones into connecting to them. The SeaGlass IMSI-catcher detector (which we from now on will call “SeaGlass sensor” or just “sensor”) gathers data from surrounding cell towers. Thus, the sensor should also pick up nearby IMSI-catchers. Analyzing SeaGlass sensor data for anomalies can enable identifying IMSI-catchers.

The SeaGlass sensor is built using off-the-shelf parts. It is based on a Raspberry Pi and requires no soldering. This guide covers the steps to assemble a SeaGlass sensor, including both hardware and software requirements. The guide also covers the installation of software, on a separate computer, that can be used to analyze data gathered by the SeaGlass sensor.
Original languageEnglish
Publication Year11.07.2018
Publication statusPublished - 11.07.2018
MoE publication typeNot Eligible


  • 113 Computer and information sciences


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