CREST/HRO in Greater Victoria - Encryption Update

bcradio

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Well, it's happening.. The last couple of days we're seeing multiple fire departments updating their radios to use encryption on their talkgroups. So far it's the vehicles and portables with DND Fire and Central Saanich fire (that' I've monitored). But I expect in a week or two all fire departments will go silent to us.

Yes, we were lucky that we had clear comms for so long, but it still stings.

That's all.1702518179976.png
 

dwc

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Yeah I remember the sting clearly over here in ECOMM land. It seems like forever ago, but we lost everything as soon as they migrated from EDACS to the new Phase 2 system with encryption right off the bat.
 

bcradio

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Saanich Fire units seem to have gone encrypted. Dispatch comms still in the clear.
This is the same way all other agencies went. Units went encrypted first, then dispatch a few days later.
 

bcradio

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The move is almost complete. So far dispatch in each agency is in the clear, but most mobiles/portables in most agencies are in encrypted. Victoria Fire still fully unencrypted, but that's likely to change in the next few days. There is still one Saanich Fire dispatch console operating n the clear, but that's likely to go soon. Esquimalt Fire cut over today.

I haven't been able to monitor much in the west, but right now it seems ALL Gulf Islands and Saanich Penninsula Fire is gone.
In the Westshore, I 'think' Langford is still clear. But that's about it.

Haven't been able to monitor anything towards Sooke yet, but I'm assuming they're likely gone, too.

Just an update, encryption keys for all agencies seem to change the first Tuesday of every month. I bet it's the same over on the mainland, too.

Fire pagers seem to be still operating as normal analogue and in the clear. However, they may be moving to a new system, as I heard the CREST techs doing test pages on 154.92 in analogue, testing the "new system" and "new pagers".

So far for me, this "new system" is either still on 154.92 or something else I haven't discovered yet.
 

bcradio

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Just saw a few radios go encrypted on the Victoria Fire Dispatch talkgroup. I'd say by the end of the week it'll be pretty much done for in the Capital region.
 

bcradio

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I don't know if it was just me (it's in the limits of my coverage), but.... Emergency Program talk groups seem to be encrypted as well.
I can't say for sure, but last night's volunteer check in I could only hear the coordination centre, not the individual check ins.

Of all the things that should never be encrypted... I mean... Really?
Other notes, for sure Victoria Fire fireground is also Encrypted. I held out a glimmer of hope on this one, but no, it's gone, too.
 

bcradio

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The last remaining unencrypted radios on the system were updated today. All talkgroups in the Greater Victoria area now are 100% encrypted.

In a way, it's good it's finally gone. The slow, agonizing march towards full ENC was kind of hard to bear. Kind of like how it's better to rip the bandaid off all at once ;-)

Anyway, I'll be turning my attention to discovering new things to monitor. You'll soon be seeing more new stuff from the island in the near future.
 

mryvr

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the cost to encrypt FD is just a waste. add to that they landed on AES when ADP would fulfill the "need" is another cost that could of been avoided. they will say that it's mutual aid but you can have both AES and ADP in the same radio.
 

kayn1n32008

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the cost to encrypt FD is just a waste. add to that they landed on AES when ADP would fulfill the "need" is another cost that could of been avoided. they will say that it's mutual aid but you can have both AES and ADP in the same radio.
Cost is minimal for hardware multi key encryption when the over all cost of a radio is multi thousands of dollars. The system has at least KMF, and each radio only needs a single key loaded when initial programming is done, then it can key load from the KMF on the network.

As for AES/ADP argument. ADP is a joke and is about the modern equivalent of voice inversion. The operators of this system are pros and they were not ****ing around when they built it. Fully encrypted comms was a goal from the get go, with AES because it is currently still an undefeated algorithm There is no issues with encrypted interop. Most likely everyone gets keyed from the same KMF. All indications are that the folks that operate the system are competent, the fleet map was designed to include full time encryption and encrypted mutual aid.
 
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