Tel: 0161 241 9458

Tel: 020 7096 1125

​Email: enquiries@3ef.co.uk


We use the very best forensic hardware and software that is available to recover data from mobile phones, but sometimes, if the handset is PIN locked, smashed, water damaged or non-working for any other reason, the only way to access the data is by Chip Off. 
As the name suggests, Chip Off involves removing the memory chip from the phone's motherboard and reading the data from it - Here is a breakdown of the process...

First, we disassemble the handset and remove the motherboard.
Below is a photograph showing the memory chip of a Google Nexus 1 mobile phone:

Next, we remove all of the epoxy resin and excess solder, before 'reballing' - soldering a small, fresh ball of solder onto each contact by hand. 

A cleaned and reballed memory chip -

Finally, we are able to use our leading forensic software to reconstruct the raw data from the memory chip into SMS messages, Contacts, Photographs, videos etc. 

We then use specialist equipment to 'bake' the motherboard at a steady 100 degrees, expelling any residual moisture that could cause physical damage to the memory chip when heated further.

When ready, we very slowly raise the temperature from above and below until the solder becomes molten and the memory chip can be removed safely.

A freshly removed memory chip. Note the solder and epoxy resin deposits - manufacturers often use epoxy resin to seal the chip to the motherboard. This offers the chip a level of protection, but makes the removal and cleaning process much harder.

We use specialist hardware to interface with the connections on the bottom of the memory chip which enables us to extract the data from within

There are tens of thousands of models of mobile phone in use today, using many different memory chips - We have an extensive collection of adapters, allowing us to read data from the most widely used in mobile phones as well as those less common, such as cheap 'burner' phones, fake iPhone and Android knockoffs and phones made by obscure foreign companies.

What is chip-off?

All of the hard work results in a full read of the raw data from the memory chip.