Defund Encryption Update

Buttescan

Member
Feed Provider
Joined
Aug 21, 2009
Messages
11
Location
Chico, CA
"PII is not "protected" when it becomes an element of an interaction with Police or certain public services, it becomes public information (except certain witness/victim identifiers (which actually have laws, federal and state, protecting them). There is no "right" or assumption of privacy when in public. When an interaction between a citizen and a public service occurs that information is now in the public realm, with any protected health information redacted.

...as stated, and affirmed by the SCOTUS. Hence the MOU from the DOJ and not a "law" from the legislature(s).
"On October 12, 2020, the California Department of Justice (DOJ) issued Information Bulletin #20-09-CJIS, which set forth legal mandates and guidelines regarding the “Confidentiality of Information from the California Law Enforcement Telecommunications System (CLETS).” The guidelines require law enforcement agencies to protect Personally Identifiable Information (PII) and Criminal Justice Information (CJI). PII is information such as an individual’s first and last name in combination with more specific data such as a driver license number or date of birth. CJI is information such as wants/warrants, restraining orders, and/or details related to an individual’s probation or parole status."
 

Buttescan

Member
Feed Provider
Joined
Aug 21, 2009
Messages
11
Location
Chico, CA
It really depends. Each agency/officer is going to have different procedures and habits.

Point was that I can say from 30 years of experience that most agencies don't care what the hobby crowd thinks. It doesn't even figure into the discussion. I support unencrypted dispatch channels, but it's not my decision, the chief calls the shots. What she decided goes.

As for CLETS, agencies agreed to this a long time ago, nothing has changed other than DOJ is holding them to the agreement now.
You're spot on. In addition, DOJ isn't just cracking down on protecting PII via radio but in every way. CLETS data used to flow just like all other data over a county's or city's network. Now, it has to be fully separate either via VLAN or firewalled off from all other data so there is no (or little) chance of it being intercepted, even on a government's internal network.
 

Buttescan

Member
Feed Provider
Joined
Aug 21, 2009
Messages
11
Location
Chico, CA
Remember, the argument isn't "hobby crowd" or as mentioned earlier, "scanner hobbyists." With 2020 replace "hobbyists" with "citizens of the community." Some here recently mentioned not knowing anyone else with a scanner. Just about every community/town/neighborhood in the US now has a large Facebook Group gathering similar to what the NextDoor app was trying to accomplish a long time ago, and very easily each group has 3-10% of its members with scanners. Just my rural area of 20k, with a facebook group of 6700+ people, has about 30-50 known with scanners. And they aren't hobbyists. They have no idea what they're doing other than the zipcode got them there, or a friend programmed in magic numbers and now they're hearing "10-4" on the radio. But every day the department's actions are reported on and they are held accountable. And it is in a very positive light (thankfully our departments here are community-oriented and no power-hungry officers here).

Professionally, I agree with you and know the law's opinion on this, I support law communications in my day job and side job. But it's VERY important to not frame this as "hobbyists" but as "the people" want access to this. And yes, I also realize the juxtaposition of having "the people" wanting their privacy to be protected while at the same time wanting a semblance of transparency in their departments. That's a problem they/we will have to figure out.
There are really four key points that are all to some degree opposing issues.

Issue 1: Protection of Personally Identifiable Information (PII) including DL, DOB, Wants/Warrants, home address, license plate, etc.

Issue 2: From law enforcement's perspective, there are concerns with both officer safety and in some cases, response or case confidentiality such as serving warrants, raids, etc.

Issue 3: Transparency of law enforcement and government.

Issue 4: Hobbyist / Scanner enthusiast

In the grand scheme of things, as MMckenna has pointed out, #4 is the least important of the bunch.

And issues 1-3 are all opposing issues.
 

norcalscan

Interoperating Spurious Emissions
Joined
Feb 7, 2003
Messages
401
Location
The real northern california
There are really four key points that are all to some degree opposing issues.
1 and 3 are the current juxtaposition. 2 is not part of this argument, accepted by the people, and has already been solved with combinations of encryption, low power tactical channels, etc.

4 is one (but not only) means of helping achieve 3, but tomato tomato, and hence my recent reply an hour ago, this is far beyond us enthusiasts here who argue about simulcast multipath intermod gibberish and what the best 19" rack mount solution is for their SDS200. These are the masses who got their radio via Bezos Prime, plugged it into the wall, entered their zipcode into the radio, and plugged the metal rod doohickey into the back and can now listen to their local police and why the siren went past their house 20 seconds ago. Half of them don't even realize the metal doohickey extends.
 

es93546

A Member Twice
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Aug 18, 2020
Messages
466
Location
East of the Sierra Crest-Right Side of CA on Map
Remember, the argument isn't "hobby crowd" or as mentioned earlier, "scanner hobbyists." With 2020 replace "hobbyists" with "citizens of the community." Some here recently mentioned not knowing anyone else with a scanner. Just about every community/town/neighborhood in the US now has a large Facebook Group gathering similar to what the NextDoor app was trying to accomplish a long time ago, and very easily each group has 3-10% of its members with scanners. Just my rural area of 20k, with a facebook group of 6700+ people, has about 30-50 known with scanners. And they aren't hobbyists. They have no idea what they're doing other than the zipcode got them there, or a friend programmed in magic numbers and now they're hearing "10-4" on the radio. But every day the department's actions are reported on and they are held accountable. And it is in a very positive light (thankfully our departments here are community-oriented and no power-hungry officers here).

Professionally, I agree with you and know the law's opinion on this, I support law communications in my day job and side job. But it's VERY important to not frame this as "hobbyists" but as "the people" want access to this. And yes, I also realize the juxtaposition of having "the people" wanting their privacy to be protected while at the same time wanting a semblance of transparency in their departments. That's a problem they/we will have to figure out.
Good points raised here! I have to say though, that I've not lived in a county with a total of 20,000 people since 1977 and can comment from a much more rural area. In fact, I've lived in three rural areas since 1977, with over 10 years in towns of 650-675 people. Scanner ownership is quite high in the smallest of rural areas. I don't have any data on it so my anecdotal observations can't quantify it. I think I've already expounded on why the ownership is high somewhere on this thread.

That is why they have inquiry channel's and tactical's and MDC's.
Not in rural areas, especially those separated by topography from areas of higher populations. Furthermore, it is going to be a major expense for rural area law enforcement agencies to encrypt inquiry channels or even come up with the necessary frequencies. Some of our electronic sites are high enough to interfere with some cities far from us. Our topography also makes the use of 700/800 MHz trunked systems out of the question, because a large percentage of the terrain can't be covered by the higher bands. VHF High is the standard as having it allows interoperability with the federal land management agencies, state wildlife agencies, state parks in 3 of the states I've lived in, wildland fire agencies and many others. I was able to have interoperability with nearly all the state and local agencies as a U.S. Forest Service officer as far back as 1982 and prior to that using scanner cross talk when we only had 3 channels in our radios. This as far back as 1973 when we finally could get approval from our purchasing people for buying crystal scanners.

I don't know if our county is going to be able to afford radios capable of encryption for awhile. Things are a bit tight for counties and small towns right now as you might expect. I foresee cells phones being used to run plates/people. The cell phone coverage in our county doesn't even cover all of the one U.S. highway that accesses the north and south boundaries of the county. All but one of the other state highways in the county have nearly no cell phone coverage.
 

KK4JUG

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Dec 13, 2014
Messages
3,504
Location
GA
People keep bringing up nuances that need some additional comment. If you don't like it, someone is not holding a gun to your head to click on this thread.
I never said I didn't like it. With over 3,000 posts, it's apparent I know how this forum works and I can read or not read anything I like. You're reading something into my post that isn't there. All of these "nuances" are pretty much restatements of things that have already been said and I stand by that earlier statement.
 

mmckenna

I ♥ Ø
Joined
Jul 27, 2005
Messages
15,862
Location
SNCZCA01DS0
We're gonna beat this thing to death, aren't we?
Likely.
We keep coming back to the entertainment value of having a scanner, and not wanting to lose their investment. Complete obliviousness to what the realities are and what experienced people are telling them.

It's about time that someone brings up the "I'm a ham operator and should have access to encryption keys" statement again.
 

FIRE321FIGHTER1985

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Dec 19, 2000
Messages
508
Location
Winnsboro, La
I would definately support the defunding of encryption on public safety radios except in certain cases like swat, detectives, narcotics and some other channels.
 

GlobalNorth

Active Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
May 2, 2020
Messages
686
Location
Verde Valley & the Hassayampa River
I would definately support the defunding of encryption on public safety radios except in certain cases like swat, detectives, narcotics and some other channels.
Your point assumes that every LE agency in the US is the size of LAPD, NYPD, Chicago PD, etc. Most public safety agencies are town and small city/county police agencies with a few dozen employees and, at most, a few frequencies that are assigned by geographic areas, not department function.
 

vagrant

ker-muhj-uhn
Joined
Nov 19, 2005
Messages
1,992
Location
California
Yeah defund encryption! I listen to military aircraft and ground stations that are sometimes encrypted. I need to know what is going on! I have a GMRS license, Amateur license and several other license by rule services granted to me by the FCC, so I should be able to monitor the military because I pay taxes and have an FRN. Not only am I very important, but my mom told me I was special. :D
 

KK4JUG

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Dec 13, 2014
Messages
3,504
Location
GA
"In the grand scheme of things, as MMckenna has pointed out, #4 is the least important of the bunch."

Incorrect - #4 is the most important.

Situational Awareness

Please see this thread from Ohio - Marion County Sheriff - Dispatch Channel
You're joking, aren't you? By definition a hobby is something done during one's leisure time for pleasure. Perhaps a fifth item should be listed for "situational awareness" but there's no way I'd put either in the number one slot.
 

zerg901

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Apr 19, 2005
Messages
3,409
Did you hear the tape played in the US Senate yesterday? By a black female Senator / Delegate?

Danger To Lawmakers, Republican Reaction: Takeaways From Impeachment Trial Day 2


The acoustics in the Senate chamber as the video played made it easy for senators to hear the audio clips from the police radios that revealed the frantic calls for backup.

Ohio GOP Sen. Rob Portman said it was "not easy" to relive that day. But he also admitted that senators had believed they were secure, and "based on the footage, maybe not as protected as we thought we were. But at the time, people — I mean, I think very few of my colleagues felt that they were in danger."
 
Last edited:

mmckenna

I ♥ Ø
Joined
Jul 27, 2005
Messages
15,862
Location
SNCZCA01DS0
"In the grand scheme of things, as MMckenna has pointed out, #4 is the least important of the bunch."

Incorrect - #4 is the most important.

Situational Awareness
No, hobby use is not the most important.

Don't confuse hobby use with true situational awareness. They are two different things.

Situational awareness absolutely has it's place, and it not only applies to other agencies who may not have encryption capability, but also to the general public. I've always agreed that keeping primary dispatch channels in the clear is a valid idea. Some agencies have gone that route. Some have not. There are currently no laws I'm aware of that requires public safety radio traffic to be in the clear. If anyone knows of a valid standing law that addresses that, I'd love to hear.

Individual agencies are having to make this decision based on a lot of different factors. Not all of those factors are publicly known, not all of them are negotiable, and not all of them are easy to address. For scanner hobbyists to make demands regarding encryption often shows a lack of understanding of how the realities of this subject play into the discussion.

I get it, you want to hear EVERYTHING. You believe it's your 'right' to have access to it via a scanner in real time. The realities don't agree with you.

I encourage hobbyists to make their desires known to public safety agencies. But expecting agencies to change based on a small niche group of hobbyists is a bit flawed.

But by all means, try, and keep trying.
 
Top