Can a SIM Card be Tracked?

First of all, what is a SIM card? SIM stands for Subscriber Identification Module (SIM). It is basically a portable memory chip that is inserted inside a cell phone. In terms of security, the SIM card carries a authentication protocol and has unique information related to its owner. This unique information includes the phone number, personal data contacts and messages. Other information contained in a SIM card is the IMSI or International Mobile Subscriber Identity, Local Area Identity or LAI, ICCID and etc.

A cell phone or mobile device can only be used once it is inserted with the SIM card. The important factor to be taken account is that the SIM card is only functional once it is inserted into the mobile device. However, once activated SIM is the conduit for tracking as it will emit the IMEI number of your mobile device as well as the SIM’s serial number to a nearby cell tower. SIM card are categorized as a slave computing device. This means it is a passive device where it is only activated once it is powered by a mobile device. So the SIM card can only be traced once it inserted into a cell phone and it is within a network coverage area. But, in the case your cellphone got stolen, some phones and also network operator has the function that is called SIM lock. This SIM lock usually link a SIM card specifically with a mobile device. Once this mobile device got stolen together with the SIM card in it, the SIM card can be automatically be block by the network operator. This means that the person who stole it cannot use the phone unless he or she removes the SIM card out. The network operator can also detect where the last location of your SIM card was activated before it is removed. Also, please be careful of what information you put into a SIM card. Any personal information can be hacked from a SIM card once it is stolen.