Denver (CO) Fire to encrypt all tactical channels

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N5XTC

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From the Denver Post on February 27, 2019: "Following the lead of Denver police, radio traffic from the Denver Fire Department will no longer be accessible to the public starting next month, though one automated dispatch channel will remain open."

Read more: Denver Fire Department to encrypt radio traffic in March
this is horrible. denver is one of the best cities to scan for action. better than television. sometimes there is so much action it was tough to follow it all. i came from brownsville tx where action was considered listening to the sheriff put fuel in his car. horrible place for scanning
 

Thunderknight

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"Pixley said in November that the fire department was not planning on encrypting its channels, but he said Tuesday that the department later learned it would need to do so to facilitate easy communication with police. It’s difficult to switch between encrypted and unencrypted channels, he said, and echoed Pazen’s concerns about sensitive information being broadcast."

Easy Communication? Difficult to switch between them? Huh? It's more likely they don't want to risk saying something on a clear channel when the user thought it was a secure channel. From a user perspective it's easier to just have all the channels secure.
I hope whatever channel is being used for the man down button isn't secure...so if you dump your key somehow, the emergency function still works.
 
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Volfirefighter

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"the public will still be able to listen to automated dispatch alerts that tell firefighters where to go and the basics of what is happening there, though communication from firefighters on scene will be blocked"

So firefighters will have to be on one channel in order to receive the dispatch and then switch to a second channel for on-scene operations and finally remember to switch back to the dispatch channel afterwards to avoid missing the next tone-out. Yea, that is much simpler and will never cause any issues.
 

Thunderknight

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So firefighters will have to be on one channel in order to receive the dispatch and then switch to a second channel for on-scene operations and finally remember to switch back to the dispatch channel afterwards to avoid missing the next tone-out. Yea, that is much simpler and will never cause any issues.
They could just dedicate a 1-way dispatch-out talkgroup and multiselect it to the actual main dispatcher TG during dispatches (meaning the field user doesn't have to do anything). It's actually common in many systems to do it that way. Some call it an Alert TG or house page TG.
 

n3obl

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basically they dont want a polk co fl incident where they were able to get scanner audio outside offical channels
 

BoxAlarm187

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So firefighters will have to be on one channel in order to receive the dispatch and then switch to a second channel for on-scene operations and finally remember to switch back to the dispatch channel afterwards to avoid missing the next tone-out. Yea, that is much simpler and will never cause any issues.
This is how virtually all the local agencies do it around here (including both of mine) and have for years. We haven’t encountered any issues with it.




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KD0DUJ

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I will be talking to Denver city council on monday about this because it hurts the Amateur Radio Emergency Service and Denver CERT
 

AI7PM

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"....department later learned it would need to do so to facilitate easy communication with police. It’s difficult to switch between encrypted and unencrypted channels, he said, and echoed Pazen’s concerns about sensitive information being broadcast."

Their system, their call to encrypt or not, but BS like this statement just calls their credibility into question. Technically innacurate.
 
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W4ZMJ

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im sure some moderator will close this soon cause it involves talking about encryption its like this one of the story's bout media getting information about a 4 year olds death and what not well common sense would say when you at a scene like that to go to encrypted channels dispatch channels should not be encrypted but tac channels and admin channels I understand so sense the police are going encrypted so every one else has to follow that's a cheap trick just stay in the clear want have to worry bout it right lol actually hurts interoperability whole state should be encrypted with the same encryption key ?
 

allend

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I will be talking to Denver city council on monday about this because it hurts the Amateur Radio Emergency Service and Denver CERT
Yes, this is exactly whats going to happen in Orange County, CA soon. All Fire to be encrypted and it will hurt the Amateur Radio Emergency Service as well as RACES and CERT programs. These people that make these dumb decisions do not know what the real impact is with their city and county volunteer programs
 

KD0DUJ

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"....department later learned it would need to do so to facilitate easy communication with police. It’s difficult to switch between encrypted and unencrypted channels, he said, and echoed Pazen’s concerns about sensitive information being broadcast."

Their system, their call to encrypt or not, but BS like this statement just calls their credibility into question. Technically innacurate.
The radio system is owned by the taxpayers
 

Spitfire8520

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The radio system is owned by the taxpayers
Is a technically incorrect statement as legalese says it is currently owned by Banc of America Public Capital Corp and is being leased to the City and County of Denver. Once the payments are made over several years, then the radio system will then be owned by the City and County of Denver, not "the taxpayers."

The taxpayers fund the radio system, along with most everything else in the government, but it does not mean that the taxpayers own it. Do not confuse funding something with owning something. Anyone can test this theory by walking into your local fire/police station and attempt to take the one of the vehicles. Just remember to say that you are taxpayer and own that vehicle. It will most likely will not end well.

I am not happy to see a fire department in Colorado go encrypted, but telling them that you own the system (and by extension everything else) is very likely not the best approach when voicing your dissatisfaction with the situation.
 

ResQguy

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"the public will still be able to listen to automated dispatch alerts that tell firefighters where to go and the basics of what is happening there, though communication from firefighters on scene will be blocked"

So firefighters will have to be on one channel in order to receive the dispatch and then switch to a second channel for on-scene operations and finally remember to switch back to the dispatch channel afterwards to avoid missing the next tone-out. Yea, that is much simpler and will never cause any issues.
What you described is literally how 99% of the fire departments in the world operate.
 

n0doz

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"....department later learned it would need to do so to facilitate easy communication with police. It’s difficult to switch between encrypted and unencrypted channels, he said, and echoed Pazen’s concerns about sensitive information being broadcast."
Their system, their call to encrypt or not, but BS like this statement just calls their credibility into question. Technically innacurate.
The bosses' info is only as good as what their comm people want them to know.
As for comms with the police, I can't recall any time there was ever any interop radio traffic in the city, other than the arson investigators, of course.
 

kayn1n32008

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"the public will still be able to listen to automated dispatch alerts that tell firefighters where to go and the basics of what is happening there, though communication from firefighters on scene will be blocked"

So firefighters will have to be on one channel in order to receive the dispatch and then switch to a second channel for on-scene operations and finally remember to switch back to the dispatch channel afterwards to avoid missing the next tone-out. Yea, that is much simpler and will never cause any issues.
That’s what happens in the city I live near. Locally due to poor repeater coverage, it is normal to switch to talk around on scene.




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IAmSixNine

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I agree with n0doz, they are spinning words to make it sound like they need it. Sorry for you folks in the Denver area. Sad to see fire go encrypted.
 
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