Cell phone cloning is extremely difficult to do these days, here in the US and in Canada, but it appears that some crafty crooks in Korea are having an easier time of it.

Cell phone cloning is done by scanning the air waives for electronic serial number/mobile identification number combinations, and programming them into another phone.

US and Canadian phone companies are pretty good about identifying this type of fraud and taking care of it.

From The Korea Times:

Hardly a single day passes without cloning making headlines here in Korea. This time, it is about cell phones, not stem cells involving the troubled scientist Hwang Woo-suk. The Central Radio Management Office (CRMO) Monday said it had seized 6,574 illegally-cloned handsets last year, roughly eight times more than 858 in 2004.

"Indeed, the number of cloned phones uncovered by us rose substantially last year. But that does not mean that phone cloning is exploding," a CRMO official said. "As the duplicated phones emerged as a social issue last year we reinforced monitoring on them and that might explain the increased figure of cloned cell phones," he said.