• Effective immediately we will be deleting, without notice, any negative threads or posts that deal with the use of encryption and streaming of scanner audio.

    We've noticed a huge increase in rants and negative posts that revolve around agencies going to encryption due to the broadcasting of scanner audio on the internet. It's now worn out and continues to be the same recycled rants. These rants hijack the threads and derail the conversation. They no longer have a place anywhere on this forum other than in the designated threads in the Rants forum in the Tavern.

    If you violate these guidelines your post will be deleted without notice and an infraction will be issued. We are not against discussion of this issue. You just need to do it in the right place. For example:
    https://forums.radioreference.com/rants/224104-official-thread-live-audio-feeds-scanners-wait-encryption.html

Lots of traffic on HF

Status
Not open for further replies.

mancow

Member
Database Admin
Joined
Feb 19, 2003
Messages
5,889
Location
N.E. Kansas
There seems to be alot of traffic on the GHFS system tonight. Skyking is active every minute or so. I just heard an aircraft with a foreign accent calling in and he was basically cut off by Andrews for another EAM.


I wonder if they're gearing up for something since this is the start of the supposed cease fire.
 

mancow

Member
Database Admin
Joined
Feb 19, 2003
Messages
5,889
Location
N.E. Kansas
OK, this is wiered!

11.175 USB there's the normal GHFS traffic. Then that same guy with the accent switched and started talking to someone in what sounds to be Russian. I can't make out the other station very well but it sounds like someone speaking in Russian as well and they are fairly excited.

Now, I'm getting what sounds like some sort of strange music fading in and out. I know it's not a local AM station because the radio is in USB and I never get AM interference anyway.


What the hell is going on?
 

nexus

Member
Joined
Aug 13, 2002
Messages
1,646
Location
Mississippi
mancow said:
There seems to be alot of traffic on the GHFS system tonight. Skyking is active every minute or so. I just heard an aircraft with a foreign accent calling in and he was basically cut off by Andrews for another EAM.


I wonder if they're gearing up for something since this is the start of the supposed cease fire.
Your post confuses me, if I'm reading this wrong please forgive. But SKYKING is not a callsign in the sense of it being an aircraft or station, SKYKING is a codeword for a specific type of transmission. Here is the explanation. Even if you do know this aready, it might be knowledgable for someone else reading.

SKYKING messages are special EAM's. These presumably could be the nuclear go/no-go codes. There was a higher than normal number of EAM's and SKYKING messages being transmitted after the attackes of 9/11/01. Urgent SKYKING messages are repeated three or four times instead of the usual two. SKYKING is a group callsign, meaning "Any this net." "Do not answer" is the standard procedure ofr self-authenticating broadcasts, meaning that recipients don't need to give away their positions or existence by challenging the orders. While tuned to any of the GHFS frequncies and hear "SKYKING SKYKING Do not answer" you can bet you're hearing a very important, highest priority, and heavily encrypted message!



btw, i've never head anything like you described... wow that sucks i missed it. sounds like something is up.
 

VernM

Member
Joined
Jan 11, 2006
Messages
207
Location
Arkansas' Ozarks
KB5FSB writes; "....hear "SKYKING SKYKING Do not answer" you can bet you're hearing a very important, highest priority, and heavily encrypted message!"

Heavialy encrypted? That brings a chuckle. Back when I was a guest aboard a B-52 out of Ellsworth AFB for 12 hours or so, the SKYKING message was a Fail-Safe that expected no answer. If you got it and the code matched your set, you were to turn back from the plotted attack mission and just go about the rest of your training flight. Sorry to burst your bubble.
 

mancow

Member
Database Admin
Joined
Feb 19, 2003
Messages
5,889
Location
N.E. Kansas
What I was trying to say is that the Skyking messages were very frequent.

In between them was other traffic and the Russian sounding guy. The music wasn't a product of overload either. I checked for that too. Even if it was it should have been a whine if AM was trying to get in since I was in USB mode.


Strange stuff.... whoever they were they were chatting it up then it stopped around 1:00 AM.
 
Joined
Apr 1, 2005
Messages
250
Location
NE Missouri
I was always under the impression that the constant flow of EAMs on HF was specifically designed to not to betray any change in readiness or defense posture particularly in times of crisis. In other words other than the occasional well known annual exercises an adversary never knows what messages are routine and what aren't as there is always a fairly steady level of traffic. When there is/was a change in EAM tempo it was probably designed to send a message to monitoring adversaries as much as anything especially during the days of Cold War brinkmanship

I think we probably read a little too much into EAM and SKYKING broadcasts. Yeah they're interesting for sure. I find them fascinating and I try to find patterns and have wasted reams of paper trying find similarities and patters to them but I have to admit that for the most part they're probably routine stuff designed to hide the occasional important stuff all of which is useless without the codebooks obviously.
 

dpcain

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Dec 14, 2008
Messages
1,396
Location
MD
... I have to admit that for the most part they're probably routine stuff designed to hide the occasional important stuff all of which is useless without the codebooks obviously.
I would agree- that's fairly sensible practice with high-potential-importance low-use emergency communication systems. Makes these messages appear normal no matter what the coded content, and in the event of an actually important FLASH message it'll seem like any other transmission. Similar principle to padding encrypted messages.
 

stfive

Member
Joined
Dec 19, 2002
Messages
9
I have a buddy that retired from one of the government agencies that was very active during the cold war. He told me that mixed in with the normal message traffic were coded messages intended for friendly assets. Hiding in plain sight was how he put it.

I don’t know if that’s still common practice, but it demonstrates that you never really know what you are hearing.
 

DaveNF2G

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Jan 23, 2001
Messages
9,243
Location
Rensselaer, NY
Those messages could also serve as voice propagation beacons. With frequent voice transmissions, one always knows what frequency is best just in case you need to call someone.

In ALE mode, they don't have to load up with content, just send the sounding pulses.
 

Fast1eddie

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Mar 4, 2004
Messages
547
Location
Crafton Pennsylvania
Consider the possibility that this traffic is exercise related. About twice a year, we would participate in a communications exercise where intentional QRM was added to the EAM. We were evaluated on our ability to break the message with AC/DC, ZZ Top and the like-with a chain saw added to the mix. The commo exercise did not last too long, sort of a sub exercise added to the big picture.

Good DX,
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top