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Password Recovery of a Smartphone in less than 15 minutes: Another Technological Endeavor

Updated: Sep 30, 2023

In today's era, safeguarding personal data with passwords is the norm. However, this routine security measure presents a unique challenge for investigators seeking access to devices while adhering to legal and ethical guidelines. In a recent assignment, a prestigious Government Organization sought assistance in unlocking a Vivo Y21G phone safeguarded by a 4-digit passcode. Join us as we unveil the intricate process of unlocking the device while maintaining the utmost integrity throughout this digital quest.

The Vivo Y21G phone was protected by a passcode, making conventional unlocking methods ineffective. The first step in tackling this challenge was to conduct a comprehensive examination of the device to understand its specifications and potential vulnerabilities. Initial attempts to boot the device from recovery mode using button combinations proved futile, highlighting the need for a more sophisticated approach.

Password Recovery

To surmount this, we employed the JTAG (Joint Test Action Group) technique, a method used for acquiring data from devices that cannot be accessed through conventional means. JTAG entails establishing a connection to the device's Standard Test Access Ports (TAPs) and instructing the processor to transfer raw data from the connected memory chips (IC).

Mastering the JTAG technique requires a high level of skill and expertise. The procedure involved a meticulous identification and precise connection to specific test points on the device using pin probes. Once the device was successfully connected and in recovery mode, the Passware Kit Mobile PKM Tool was used which created a comprehensive backup of the device before applying Brute Force attack, that uses advanced algorithms and considerable computational power to systematically test all possible passcode combinations and unlock the phone. Astonishingly, the passcode (4 digit here) was successfully cracked in less than 15 minutes, showcasing the efficacy of this approach.

password recovery

With the passcode successfully bypassed, the acquired data was meticulously processed and analyzed in line with the customer's requirements. This step was crucial in extracting relevant information while maintaining data integrity throughout the investigation.

Following the successful extraction and analysis of the device's data, the Vivo Y21G phone was reassembled to its original state and handed over to the client. This comprehensive investigation delivered the client precisely what they sought: relevant and vital information, all achieved within the framework of the highest integrity and legality in digital forensics.

The journey through digital forensics is challenging and intricate, but the mastery of techniques ensures that we make strides in fortifying our nation's digital landscape. Stay connected as we conquer these challenges on our journey toward a digitally sound nation safeguarding our collective digital future.

Case Study - Cyint Technologies


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