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Old 07-09-2017, 1:50 PM
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Exclamation Encryption on simplex.

I'm curious about the "Basic" and "Enhanced" encryption that is available on the TYT DM-380. Are those scrambling techniques legal on amateur radio frequencies. I'm asking because I'm tempted to use them but I'm hesitant about it due to the questionable legality of it all.

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Old 07-09-2017, 4:04 PM
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Moved to this forum since this pertains to the Amateur Radio rules.
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Old 07-09-2017, 4:08 PM
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Scrambling and encryption are not legal on ham radio in the US.
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Old 07-09-2017, 5:53 PM
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Quote:
97.113 Prohibited transmissions.
(a) No amateur station shall transmit:
4) Music using a phone emission except as specifically provided elsewhere in this section; communications intended to facilitate a criminal act; messages encoded for the purpose of obscuring their meaning, except as otherwise provided herein; obscene or indecent words or language; or false or deceptive messages, signals or identification.
97.211 allows a space telecommand station, i.e. a station that is controlling an amateur radio station operating in space, to transmit encrypted messages to control the space station. I think that's the only place in Part 97 where encryption is allowed.

It's generally accepted that the only reason for transmitting an encrypted message is to obscure its meaning. Note that encoding and encryption are not the same thing. Digital encoding is permitted in amateur radio, encryption is not (except for 97.211).
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Old 07-09-2017, 7:08 PM
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So that pertains to voice inversion as well?
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Old 07-09-2017, 8:20 PM
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Yes, all forms of encryption.


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Originally Posted by KC5CSG View Post
So that pertains to voice inversion as well?
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Old 07-11-2017, 4:34 PM
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It would be nice if we could change this rule to allow encryption for any kind of control, like when sending dtmf commands to a repeater. There are some commands that you do not want to broadcast out to the general public.
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Old 07-11-2017, 4:57 PM
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Write a petition to the FCC to change the rule. You can petition the FCC just like any other citizen.
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Old 07-11-2017, 6:51 PM
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Originally Posted by 62Truck View Post
It would be nice if we could change this rule to allow encryption for any kind of control, like when sending dtmf commands to a repeater. There are some commands that you do not want to broadcast out to the general public.
Many (most?) repeater controllers send cover tones when someone uses DTMF. Problem solved.
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Old 07-11-2017, 7:04 PM
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There was a Petition for Rulemaking (RM-11699) a few years ago to permit encryption on some types of operation that was dismissed. There was a large discussion on this site about that petition (https://forums.radioreference.com/co...o-service.html) that may provide some good reading on the pros and cons from when it was being considered by the FCC.

FCC Dismisses
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In denying the petition, the FCC concluded, “Thus, while the proposal could advance one purpose of the Amateur Radio Service — value to the public as a voluntary noncommercial communication service, particularly with respect to providing emergency communications — it would undermine other characteristics and purposes of the service. Therefore, we agree with the comments that say, in various ways, that amending the rules to allow encryption to obscure the meaning of messages transmitted during emergency services operations and related training exercises would not improve or enhance the operation of Amateur Service stations or otherwise be in the public interest.”
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Old 07-11-2017, 8:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrweather View Post
Many (most?) repeater controllers send cover tones when someone uses DTMF. Problem solved.
A repeater controller can't mute DTMF tones on the input frequency.
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Old 07-12-2017, 10:56 AM
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I have written to the FCC, I guess on deaf ears, but digital comms first to analog listeners might as well be called encrypted because to analog, its jibberish. FCC says this is legal. Digital can be Fusion, Dstar, some p25, and DMR. Most cases , not understood by only the few that have a radio that understands what mode is being used. Encrypted is unintelligible , Digital to analog, really the same. One is acceptable , one is not, but the end result is the same.
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Old 07-12-2017, 11:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by teufler View Post
I have written to the FCC, I guess on deaf ears, but digital comms first to analog listeners might as well be called encrypted because to analog, its jibberish. FCC says this is legal. Digital can be Fusion, Dstar, some p25, and DMR. Most cases , not understood by only the few that have a radio that understands what mode is being used. Encrypted is unintelligible , Digital to analog, really the same. One is acceptable , one is not, but the end result is the same.
There is a big distinction between these two cases. When using a digital "encoding" method such as Fusion, Dstar, P25 or DMR, anyone can readily purchase a compatible radio (or, in some cases a scanner) and listen to the conversation. When using "encryption", you cannot listen to the conversation, even with a radio that supports the encryption method, unless you have the encryption key. This is the difference.
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Old 07-12-2017, 11:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by teufler View Post
I have written to the FCC, I guess on deaf ears, but digital comms first to analog listeners might as well be called encrypted because to analog, its jibberish. FCC says this is legal. Digital can be Fusion, Dstar, some p25, and DMR. Most cases , not understood by only the few that have a radio that understands what mode is being used. Encrypted is unintelligible , Digital to analog, really the same. One is acceptable , one is not, but the end result is the same.
By the same reasoning, so is cw.
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Old 07-12-2017, 12:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 62Truck View Post
It would be nice if we could change this rule to allow encryption for any kind of control, like when sending dtmf commands to a repeater. There are some commands that you do not want to broadcast out to the general public.
Some repeaters let you dial into them via a telephone. (or log into them via internet control) The control op can then log in and issue commands that way. If someone is so concerned about security, then they need a controller that can operate that way.
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Old 07-12-2017, 12:40 PM
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As Steve posted, there's a huge difference. With encryption, only one or very few select people can copy. And THAT is not the intent of amateur radio what so ever!
Also as Steve pointed out, a person can go to their local amateur radio dealer and buy a digital transceiver and listen in.
Also, CW in no manner is encryption. All a person has to do is study the Morse code and copy what is being transmitted.
I would hate to see the day come, (and it will not happen) when amateurs' are allowed to encryption their transmission. If someone wants to talk in private, all they have to do is pick up the telephone and talk all they want with out anyone hearing them, (other than NSA, or other 3 letter government agencies) hearing what they need said in privacy!
Tell me, just WHY do you want amateur radios to be able to transmit encryption? Seriously, why???
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Old 07-12-2017, 1:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrweather View Post
Many (most?) repeater controllers send cover tones when someone uses DTMF. Problem solved.
except that does zip when listening to the input/control frequency
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Old 07-12-2017, 8:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KC5CSG View Post
I'm curious about the "Basic" and "Enhanced" encryption that is available on the TYT DM-380. Are those scrambling techniques legal on amateur radio frequencies. I'm asking because I'm tempted to use them but I'm hesitant about it due to the questionable legality of it all.

DE KC5CSG
You have to remember, DMR radios, including the TYT MD-380, are NOT Amateur Radios by design. Hams use them, sure. However, they were developed as a radio to be used in the Land Mobile Radio Service, not Amateur Radio Service. That is why they include an encryption/inversion/scrambling option. You will notice that any Amateur Radio Service designed radio will not have any encryption/inversion/scrambling feature.
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Old 07-12-2017, 9:18 PM
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kc4raf: there are times when we perform ares or Cert stuff when transmitting for the agency we are supporting that confidential matters pertaining to minors or health and welfare, they are agency normal requirements that require this. When we do car rally support, if an accident involving injuries to a driver, no driver names are to be transmitted over the net at any time. We are forced to use cell phone which requires net to handle two methods of comms. The radio and a cell phone at sometimes the same time.. Sure other hams can listen in, though to be 100% sure, they would have to carry 5 radios. True there are a few hams that report in who carry 4 or 5 radios. Agencies who see this , they refere to those volunteers as "Billy Blue Lights". The FCC has not been moved to accept these arguments by others yet. In a net operations, a channel can be preset with whatever the encryption scheme would be, and the general public would not be able to listen in. This would satisfy most agencies that are being supported. I am not trying to get in an argument as confidential comms have been presented to the FCC many times before and deaf ears have maybe listened. Hams have offered services that agencies could not provide for many years. First we had repeaters, agencies were in many areas just simplex . Repeaters gave them greater and clearer comms., Then we offered auto patch, or phone contact before there were cell phones. This was helpful for those who had needs to talk to others whop were not radio savey. , Then we offered slow scan tv, or the providing of images, which was a great benefits. Pictures of a scene were for more descriptive than words said. We had repeater linking, providing wider area comms. Agencies now have repeaters, cell phones that carry voice and pictures, trunking that offers wider coverage or in some states state wide comms. We have adapted DMR , but no encryption and now they have encrypted comms while we as hams sit on the side. Agencies have passed us by, and if we can not provide what they are used too, I feel we are of less or no use at all. Its like we have the guns, but the ammo is nor provided. This was like the time in Viet Nam. We knew the targets, but Washington told us what targets we could go after. Sometimes it as like , well in Indians didn't have bows and arrows anymore, they had guns that shot pretty darm good, and we had blinders on. Washington at their finest once more.
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Old 07-12-2017, 9:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by teufler View Post
kc4raf: there are times when we perform ares or Cert stuff when transmitting for the agency we are supporting that confidential matters pertaining to minors or health and welfare, they are agency normal requirements that require this........ .
Not a reason to encrypt.

If a served agency has requirements above Part 97, they should provide the equipment and training. If a served agency places requirements on a group outside of Part 97, Leadership should explain the limitations of Part 97.
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