Auburn Goes Silent

Metrofire31

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Auburn Public Safety (Fire and Police) has switched to the Montgomery Metro System and is now fully encrypted. Their VHF channels have been completely abandoned. The switch came simultaneously with the move into the new Public Safety HQ (Police and Fire) and new Fire station #1 last Friday. This change has been submitted for updating the Radio Reference Database.

Metrofire31
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EastAlabamaNews

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Last night I ran a system analyst and got hits on TGs 672 1265 hits no audio, 1336 clear PD traffic and 771 20 hits clear unk if PD or FD
 

Auburn36801

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The TalkGroups 656 belongs to APD Dispatch and 672 belongs to AFD Dispatch is showing encryp on discovery mode. AFD is patching this channel to their vhf channel. I can still hear Auburn fire but not police because the TalkGroups are encrypted.
 

EastAlabamaNews

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i hate to say it but i told you they would go the big E.
I look for a lot to go because of whats going on in the world.
I'm getting clear PD traffic on TG 1336, just now I herd a 29 check (wants/warrants) Unit 230

I know for a fact that Macon County will be encrypted, they are buying Kenwood dual-band VHF/700 radios to prepare to switch in the next 2 years, they will go on the AIRS system. My info came from who signed the papers to encrypt their TGs He is buying radios a few at a time, right now they have enough mobiles and handhelds to cover the SO but they are going to put Tuskegee PD, Notasulga PD/FD, Franklin and Shorter on the system too. Notasulga has bought the radios for the PD both handhelds and mobiles, the FD is slowly buying theirs. Southern Linc put up a new tower on AL-14 just west of downtown and under the agreement, the tower owner is giving Notasulga space on the tower for free for 10 years, this tower will be one location for the trunking site equipment, the building is in place and security around a cell tower like I have never seen, cell cams, motion detectors, FLIR remote viewing, it's like Fort Knox, if you even pull up to the gate the PD is notified instantly!

Verizon just got a variance from the Notasulga Zoning Board to put a 250' self-supporting tower in downtown, 234 East College Street South, I know its a confusing street name, two sides of College Street South- east and west side, for the life of me I don't know why they don't just use East and West College Street as the names?! Even after 15 years on the NFD I still got confused at a 2 am page out for a call on College Street.
Since the Zoning Board approved it, it goes to the council and it's already a done deal. Everyone wants it, we have crappy cell coverage and only Centurylink DSL that SUCKS. We will be less than a mile from the new Verizon tower and will go with a Verizon internet MIFI or whatever they have out then, even their unlimited plan is cheaper than my phone/DSL bill with Centurylink
 

medic9351301

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i hate to say i told you so.
read the post when they said no encryption.
sad days ahead look for more agencies to go thanks to the protestors
 

radiopro52

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i hate to say i told you so.
read the post when they said no encryption.
sad days ahead look for more agencies to go thanks to the protestors
I honestly think you're right. Some people think this is a good time to fight encryption. I wish them luck, but they'll need a lot of it. The officials will always prioritize what they believe to be officer safety over the outcries of the public who want to listen in on police activities.
 

EastAlabamaNews

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With all that is going on one could argue that PDs are "covering up" by encrypting. The "what are they hiding" mentality. Justifiable reason to not encrypt for more transparency the public wants to see yet PDs are encrypting by the day now, I am sure that someone has built a SDR that can decrypt P-25 Phase 2 TDMA, with all the hackers out there, tick the wrong one off that could possibly cause lots of trouble if they were to gain access to a system, lots of sites are IP linked and a door somewhere will be open for a hacker to shut down a complete system. Worse case I know, but possible, the entire City of Atlanta's computer system was held at ransom and they had to pay, no one could defeat the virus
 

EastAlabamaNews

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Disregard my post about the traffic on Auburn's site on TG 1336 it looks like a Montgomery PD channel is popping up on the Auburn site.
MPD Dispatch Channel 1 is in the clear tonight, I'm 45 miles from Montgomery and they're coming in loud and clear. Montgomery VFD's VHF channel is also loud and clear, Pike Road VFD was just dispatched on the VHF system and they are now talking on their own UHF channel.
Mt. Megs and Pike Road mutual aid with Shorter VFD a lot, Shorter VFD is on the Forestry UHF repeater system in Macon County, I hear them talking to both Mt. Megs and Pike Road on both the Macon and Montgomery UHF channels
 
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Auburn36801

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I have just sent an email to Auburn City Council concerning the use of encryption on the Montgomery Metro Communications Cooperative District.
 

Auburn36801

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This is a sample email sent to Auburn City Council concerning the use of encryption

The city council approved the purchase of the P25 mobile radio on April 16, 2019. On the resolution for Montgomery metro Communications Cooperative District it should say “We are requesting to purchase P-25 portable and mobile radios for the police and fire divisions as well as corresponding equipment to install in our 911 center (this part is not mentioned in the resolution) and we require the City Council to approve the use of encryption for Auburn police and fire division.” On the Hurricane Electronics invoice it has an item for single key des encryption and 2 items for single key aes encryption. The use of encryption has not been approved by the City Council since this was not listed in the resolution of the April 16 2019 meeting. Since the City Council did not approve the use of encryption for Auburn police and fire division, the city council should reverse this decision. I am asking the city council to draft a resolution at the next city council meeting in July banning the use of encryption Keys for Auburn police and fire Talkgroups on the Montgomery Metro Communications Cooperative District. I am not happy about the Auburn City Council banning Public Safety Talkgroups. Be advised that the only way a Police scanner can pick up Auburn Police and Fire is if the City Council of Auburn drafts a resolution banning the use of encryption keys for Auburn Police and Fire divisions on the Montgomery Metro Communications Cooperative District.
 

Auburn36801

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I have sent another email to the mayor of Auburn and the City Council as well as the Public Safety Director concerning the use of encryption keys on the P25 radios. I have not had an email reply yet, concerning the use of encryption keys.
 

medic9351301

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dude,
I really think its a waste of time.
That might have closed any chance of reversal.
"Be advised that the only way a Police scanner can pick up Auburn Police and Fire is if the City Council of Auburn drafts a resolution banning the use of encryption keys for Auburn Police and Fire divisions on the Montgomery Metro Communications Cooperative District".
If i am correct there was a post about the public being able to listen and that is why they wanted to go to this system.
Or it could be cause of all that has went down this month.
Now why they wanted to enc fire that's a good question other than key locations, hipa regs or maybe if a pt is transported and the house is empty.
The city does not have to publish everything it does . (example Birmingham pd did not make any thing public when they went enc.)
The public safety director could have done it alone. Also the system admin could have made that call.Also the Montgomery metro comm district could have mandated it since they own the network .
If they think its best for officer safety its best.

If i seen it correctly there was mention encryption keys.
" On the Hurricane Electronics invoice it has an item for single key des encryption and 2 items for single key aes encryption"
It could be the radios were shipped enc.
I do not see the city spending tens of thousand dollars to reprogram radios .
The time has come not to believe what you read or are told. Even good sources do not always the truth.
All you can do is ***** and yell about it. and learn to live with it.
in the words of my grandfather "nothing lives forever and all good things eventually die"
Its out of our control.
 

radiopro52

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You most likely won't receive a reply to those emails, but I applaud you for trying at least. The truth is that the law-abiding public being able to listen to police and fire comms is a very minute issue to most officials, and most would say we shouldn't be doing so anyway. In fact, continuously inquiring and trying to insist on open comms could make it seem like you have some other kind of motive going on.

Encryption isn't just going to go away. I actually think the biggest roadblock for scanner listeners over the next few years is going to be agencies switching to systems that are completely unmonitorable like FirstNet. Encryption can at least be switched on or off, but no scanner is ever going to let you legally listen to LTE.
 

Auburn36801

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I have an update from an Auburn police officer, they are not impressed with the radio system Montgomery Metro is on. Auburn Fire dispatch automated alerting is on the vhf channel, the Auburn Fire dispatcher Is on the encrypted channel and the firefighter responds on the vhf channel, the reason is the dispatchers have a hard time communicating with the firefighters and police on their trunk system.
 

medic9351301

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SADLY IT WILL BE FIXED IF THE HAVE A CONTRACT . ITS UP TO THE MONTGOMERY METRO TO FIX IT. VERY DOUBTFUL IF THEY COME OFF THE SYSTEM. MAKES ME WONDER IF THE FIRE KEPT VHF RADIOS IN THE ENGINES ETC . OR MAYBE THEY HAVE THE OLD VHF HT . SINCE AUBURN DOES NOT OWN THE SYSTEM ONLY THE RADIOS. I CANT SEE THEM PULLING THE NEW TRUNKED RADIOS OOS. AND GOING BACK TO VHF,
I HATE TO SAY BUT AUBURN GOT SCREWED. THEY SHOULD HAVE PUT A TRUNKED RADIO IN A FLOAT CAR TO TEST IT OUT .
 

ScubaJungle

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This is a sample email sent to Auburn City Council concerning the use of encryption

The city council approved the purchase of the P25 mobile radio on April 16, 2019. On the resolution for Montgomery metro Communications Cooperative District it should say “We are requesting to purchase P-25 portable and mobile radios for the police and fire divisions as well as corresponding equipment to install in our 911 center (this part is not mentioned in the resolution) and we require the City Council to approve the use of encryption for Auburn police and fire division.” On the Hurricane Electronics invoice it has an item for single key des encryption and 2 items for single key aes encryption. The use of encryption has not been approved by the City Council since this was not listed in the resolution of the April 16 2019 meeting. Since the City Council did not approve the use of encryption for Auburn police and fire division, the city council should reverse this decision. I am asking the city council to draft a resolution at the next city council meeting in July banning the use of encryption Keys for Auburn police and fire Talkgroups on the Montgomery Metro Communications Cooperative District. I am not happy about the Auburn City Council banning Public Safety Talkgroups. Be advised that the only way a Police scanner can pick up Auburn Police and Fire is if the City Council of Auburn drafts a resolution banning the use of encryption keys for Auburn Police and Fire divisions on the Montgomery Metro Communications Cooperative District.
Just an opinion here - and I think its great youre speaking up in spite of most people giving up.
- I think you should avoid the use of the word "ban." Banning anything immediately creates a divisive environment, and they arent going to ban the use of encryption - I also would avoid the mention of police scanners, because lets be honest, they dont give a flying #$%^& about scanners. The media, the relationship with the community, and the publicity/transparency, however, are things they are interested in. I would instead try saying something along the lines of -
"Be advised, the right to free press and journalism is one of the founding principles of this great country, and in issuing blanket encryption across both the police and fire departments, that journalistic freedom and integrity is being encroached upon and endangered. As a proud citizen of the US, and this county, I am concerned about the implications that shutting out the public, and therefore the media, may have. I understand safety concerns, and I acknowledge the legitimate use of encryption among certain police channels, but blanket encryption only makes the fragile, yet vital relationship between the police and the community that much more vulnerable. I urge you to reconsider this decision and consider leaving primary dispatch and primary day-to-day channels open to the public and the media. "
 

medic9351301

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it was stated "the reason why we are going to this system is because we are concerned about the people hearing us".
Not the same wording but basically the same thing .
My local pd has went fully encrypted for a year and has given the media access with a app with a 5 min delay. So basically the media tactic is not going to work . If They choose they can grant media access to it.
i am not in favor of encryption on dispatch channels but sadly i am just a john q citizen.
To me it seems like poor planing by the city, They should have tested it before they decided not go on what they were told.
Harris system are bad for having reception issues. I seem some where where the output power on a wt was 3 watts and a mobile was 30.
So there is one issue there.
Like i mentioned in my post from above the issues will be worked out in due time. being another tower built or some fine tuning.
Unless there is a "out" clause in the contract i do not see them coming off the system.
 
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