ESK turned on 8/22/08 7:30 AM

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Thayne

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I guess we can watch what happens if they leave it on---
 

jimmnn

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Lots of messages to the cars if you get CC search on your display turn radio on and off and if it does not fix then proceed to EEB.

Jim<
 

jimmnn

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Interesting to note they appeared to have disabled i-call (radio to radio) during the DNC.

Jim<
 

SlamX

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So does this mean that the switch is now permanent for Denver? Guess I better save up for my new GTE radio.
 

jimmnn

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Certainly does not mean it's permanent but if you consider Lakewood, West Metro and Wheat Ridge have moved and if Denver can be successful with ESK on during such a major event as the DNC I would personally say it's here to stay.

Jim<
 

n0doz

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I'd say permanent, considering the logistics required to switch back and forth: there isn't an "ESK on-off" function that's user-accessible.
 

Thayne

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It is easy to turn it off,(or on) just a click of the left mouse key; I noticed they disabled I-Calls too, probably to be sure the system doesn't get busies.

I think I will try to tell what those P-25 VHF high freqs somebody posted are being used for--Unless anybody else knows?
 

SlamX

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Now this is weird. I am picking up sporatic chatter on Denver on my old BC200!!! How the heck can that be if ESK is on now!!?
 

Thayne

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You can still hear the audio conventionally, or scan it after a fashion if your scanner does EDACS Scat.
The FM audio is still the same.
 

Scan-Denver

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Now this is weird. I am picking up sporatic chatter on Denver on my old BC200!!! How the heck can that be if ESK is on now!!?
You'll still be able to monitor the voice channels conventionally (as before trunk tracking scanners came about), you just won't be able to follow the conversation completely. For example, your scanner stops on the first frequency that is active and you'll hear the dist 1 dispatcher, then the next frequency your scanner stops on you'll hear a Dist 5 officer.

All ESK does is change the databits in the control channel which makes the system un-trackable to scanners that aren't ESK capable.
 

frameloss

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Pulling out my hair

I am glad I found this forum! I have been pulling my hair out for the last few hours while I figured out what was wrong with my scanner. I thought it was rebanding related, but no the answer is unfortunately that Denver is using ESK!

I don't really see the point of using it if the audio transmissions are still unencrypted, the only thing worse than no security is a false sense of security. I don't understand how it actually prevents either eavesdropping or intentional interference. It just makes old scanners less useful. It sounds like a lot of busy work for very little gain.
 

utlchris

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The main purpuse of ESK was not to block users out from listening but rather to make it more difficult for someone to program a radio to key up on the system and generate false radio traffic. So it really was not a waste of time or money if it saves having emergency equipment responding code to a fake call.

I am glad I found this forum! I have been pulling my hair out for the last few hours while I figured out what was wrong with my scanner. I thought it was rebanding related, but no the answer is unfortunately that Denver is using ESK!

I don't really see the point of using it if the audio transmissions are still unencrypted, the only thing worse than no security is a false sense of security. I don't understand how it actually prevents either eavesdropping or intentional interference. It just makes old scanners less useful. It sounds like a lot of busy work for very little gain.
 

donc13

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ESK Key?

Uniden is allowing me to beta test some new firmware for the 396 that includes ESK capabilities, only "problem" is, for it to work...I need to know the current ESK key that Denver (and others) are using.

Anyone know? It should be between 0 and 255. I can obviously find the key by trying each one utnil I hit the correct key...but if someone knows it...it'd be a big help getting me started!

Thanks!
Don
 

bwilborn

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Uniden is allowing me to beta test some new firmware for the 396 that includes ESK capabilities, only "problem" is, for it to work...I need to know the current ESK key that Denver (and others) are using.

Anyone know? It should be between 0 and 255. I can obviously find the key by trying each one utnil I hit the correct key...but if someone knows it...it'd be a big help getting me started!

Thanks!
Don
Try 160. Another user on another message found this worked for Lakewood and Wheatridge.

-- B
 
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frameloss

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The main purpuse of ESK was not to block users out from listening but rather to make it more difficult for someone to program a radio to key up on the system and generate false radio traffic. So it really was not a waste of time or money if it saves having emergency equipment responding code to a fake call.
That makes sense, but I think I just saw the "key" fly by a few seconds ago, and with a keyspace of only 255 possibilities it is pretty trivial to get on the system. It just means that to attack the system it takes a little bit more money to purchase the correct radio and an hour to brute force the key by hand--it doesn't really change the situation, just the hardware required for the attack.

Besides, an someone could always wait for an authorized user to key up and overpower the input signal to the repeater.

I guess if you look at the number of ESK capable radios in the hands of people that would want to cause problems it does buy some protection for a short while. It would make sense that they would change it at the last minute before the DNC without any public announcement--pretty genius actually, seeing as it really is the only way to make it effective for preventing tampering is to use the element of surprise while people scramble to get new hardware. It makes you wonder if they had a credible threat of someone using interference to disrupt their response during the DNC.
 
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