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For example, if I lost my SIM card (and stopped using it for years), and someone found it years later (after being deactivated by the SIM providing company due to extended nonuse), would the person who found it still have to enter the PIN code? Say I moved countries and stopped using the number.

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Yes.

Provider companies does not cancel the SIM by sending some kind of data to it, instead they blacklist the identifier of it so celular instruments does not accept requests from that specific chip. Since unlocking the SIM card has nothing to do with carrier services and it occurs internally between the phone and the SIM, you can still access to data inside and even use it as a data storage.

However, it wouldn't be possible to access celular services.

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  • Thanks. Does the SIM retain contacts and other data saved to it too? Dec 28, 2019 at 19:09
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    @JasonSamPeter of course. There is no remote kill signal that the SIM receives.
    – schroeder
    Dec 28, 2019 at 19:10
  • Thanks. But What if that particular phone number got recycled and was alloted to someone new? Dec 28, 2019 at 19:18
  • @JasonSamPeter It doesnt matter, the SIM still can be unlocked and it would be possible to see its contents. However, there wouldn't be a carrier service available to it.
    – Batuhan
    Dec 28, 2019 at 19:23
  • Thanks Batuhan. Final question: do all SIM cards require entering PIN code after being inserted a new phone? Dec 28, 2019 at 19:26

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