NYPD LIKELY TO ENCRYPT IN 2020 ?

NYPD LIKELY TO ENCRYPT IN 2020 ?

Postby cartman » Sun Dec 22, 2019 4:44 pm

https://www.amny.com/police-fire/you-wo ... press-off/

‘You won’t hear anything’: NYPD radios may go silent in 2020, cutting press off
Todd Maisel

The NYPD has plans to encrypt tens of thousands of police radios in 2020 — a development that would cut off news organizations from real-time information on crime, police involved shootings, and car crashes around the city.

If the plan goes forward, the NYPD would join other police organizations across the country — including the Port Authority Police Department and the Nassau County Police Department — and federal investigation agencies.

Rumors had been swirling for some time that the radios would be encrypted. While attending a Dec. 12 press conference in Brooklyn, NYPD Assistant Chief Thomas Conforti of the Deputy Commissioner of Public Information’s office told amNewYork that “all police radios will be encrypted sometime in 2020, just like Nassau County, you won’t be able to hear anything.”

“There has been an influx of emerging technology in law enforcement communications which the NYPD is surveying. The Department’s prime focus remains ensuring public safety best practices and ongoing improvements,” added Sergeant Jessica McRorie, an NYPD spokesperson, in an email to amNewYork.

The NYPD is spending millions of dollars to shut down the radios to all listeners for “security and public safety reasons,” police officials privately said.

Since the 1930s, press organizations across New York City have had access to police radio feeds — starting with the famous crime scene photographer, Arthur Felig, aka Wegee. At that time, Wegee was given his police radio by the NYPD.

Most news organizations rely on the police radios and the information they gleam to respond to breaking news in a timely manner. Some rely on news services to do the monitoring and provide feeds on police activity in the city, including Breaking News Network (BNN). The advent of the Citizen app allows individuals to report breaking news in their community, but most initial reports are unconfirmed or unverified.

Also, Scanner 911, Broadcastify and several other apps currently stream police communications where they are not encrypted, leading some police agencies to seek encryption to shield confidential communications from prying ears.

City officials claimed they had no knowledge of the plan.

Public Advocate Jumaane Williams, a long time critic of police actions, said he had “no idea.”
Councilman Donovan Richards office knew nothing about it despite him being the chairman of the public safety committee.

Council Speaker Corey Johnson also said he “never heard about this.”

State Attorney General Letitia James didn’t know about it either, but said, “We’ll see – I don’t know about that.”

Mayor Bill de Blasio — who has touted his administration for making the NYPD “transparent” — said Tuesday he also had no knowledge of the plan. He indicated he will discuss it with Commissioner Dermot Shea in the coming days.

Advocates, when broached about the subject of police radios and scanners, said many of the most important police-related stories would either be never reported or “sanitized” by police sources before accounts of events are distributed through email or social media.

When contacted by amNewYork for comment, a number of television and digital outlets refused to comment on the matter, out of concern of preserving a positive relationship with the NYPD.

Reverend Al Sharpton of the National Action Network said Tuesday that he, too, didn’t know about the plan, and expressed concern that the news media would not have unfiltered breaking news information.

“How do you deal with transparency when you plan to do this?” Sharpton said.

Civil rights activist Reverend Kevin McCall also expressed concern that the news media not be able to receive unfettered access to the police radio calls.

“As we move forward into the new year, dealing with new laws in place, we are talking about transparency across the board, and it did doesn’t look like the NYPD wants to continue in that way of being transparent,” McCall said.

BNN Operations Manager Sean Smith understood that the inability to provide NYPD radio information to the media will be bad for the news business. He said it “is unfair that the public doesn’t know and then the news is presented afterwards by the police.”

“News organizations will be force-fed what’s given to them,” Smith said. “If they don’t want you to know, you won’t know. If police don’t release information to the public, it will be left to judge what happens on the streets – that leads to bad information.”

Bruce Cotler, president of the New York Press Photographers Association, also expressed concern about not having proper information to do their jobs.

“It’s a sad situation and the NYPD plan lacks transparency,” Cotler said. “If it wasn’t for us monitoring radios, we wouldn’t have known about Eric Garner. That could’ve been swept under the rug. This is about checks and balances. We monitor them and make sure they are doing the right job. Otherwise, the NYPD will sanitize the news — that’s terrible.”

Disclosure: The author of this article serves as vice president of the New York Press Photographers Association.

Mickey Osterriecher, general counsel to the National Press Photographers Association, said he understood the need for increased security for police transmissions, but he emphasized the public’s right to be informed.

“By being able to monitor these radio transmissions, and covering the related incidents has been vital and without that information, it will be almost impossible to cover matters of public concern,” Osterriecher said. “We would hope that they would consider, providing encryption code to the news media that requests it, so that we will continue to inform the public.”

The Denver Post is still fighting to regain their ability to monitor police radios, but without success.

The editor of the Denver Post, Lee Ann Colacioppo, was quoted in a recent story saying: “I’m disappointed that Chief Pazen [Denver Police] has taken this wholly unnecessary step. Denver police were unable to provide a single example of Colorado media’s access to the scanner ever interfering with law enforcement activities or putting an officer at risk. Their insistence on encrypting scanner traffic should, therefore, raise important questions about the department’s commitment to transparency. Police activities filtered through the eyes of the public relations team will never provide the public with an understanding of how police in this city operate when no one is watching.”

In California, the State Assembly is pushing AB 1555, which would require police and other law enforcement agencies to give requesting news media organizations access to encrypted radio communications.

Sharpton said he would support similar legislation for New York State, should a state lawmaker draft it.
Last edited by cartman on Mon Dec 23, 2019 3:19 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: NYPD LIKELY TO ENCRYPT IN 2020

Postby cartman » Sun Dec 22, 2019 4:50 pm

Further to the first report

https://www.amny.com/news/nypd-radio-en ... will-soon/

After amNewYork reported this week of the NYPD’s plans to encrypt police radios in 2020, police officials said Thursday that it would likely not move forward with encryption for at least a year.

Moreover, police brass indicated that they are “open to discussion” as to who, outside of the Police Department, would have access to encrypted communications.

Encryption could potentially cut off media groups who currently monitor police radio feeds for breaking news. Outlets would then have to rely upon releases from the NYPD and statements from its officials.

Elected officials, none of whom seemed to know about the multi-million dollar encryption plan, have expressed fears of encryption, as it might significantly reduce “transparency” of the department. Mayor Bill de Blasio’s administration has emphasized greater transparency at the NYPD for most of his tenure.

Members of volunteer fire and ambulance squads around the city also use police radios to monitor for trouble, and many of them expressed doubts about the plan, fearing that they too would be cut off.

But on Dec. 19, NYPD Deputy Commissioner for Counter-Terrorism John Miller said encryption would happen in a “three- to five-year transition.

“So nothing’s happening today, nothing’s happening tomorrow, and probably nothing’s happening next year,” Miller said. “This is a lot of radios.”

Commissioner Dermot Shea said there must be a “balance” between police officer safety and transparency to the public.

“It is an interesting time after just what just happened in Jersey City,” Shea said, referring to the Dec. 11 terrorist attack that killed six. “With traditional crime and now traditional criminals using encryption, we can’t have situation where criminals have better technology than police officers and detectives – whether they are drug dealers or breaking into banks. Criminals are using encryption. We should certainly consider transparency, but the priority for keeping New Yorkers safe.”

Miller acknowledged some investigative channels are already encrypted to safeguard investigations, as are Federal investigative channels including Drug Enforcement administration, secret service and FBI.

“Any further encryption is open to more discussion at this point with a 3-5 year transition,” he said. “Part of the thinking and planning is where would it be advantageous to say officer safety, the integrity of investigations – the commissioner gives the example of a kidnapping, how do you conduct one of those over the radio when the world is listening for entertainment? It’s something we are looking at – nothing that is happening right away.”

Miller, a former journalist himself, noted that “There have been other cities gone encrypted, and they’ve made arrangements with news media that have made sense. If we ever get to the point where we are going to that level, I’m sure that discussion will take place.”

Miller testified Wednesday at the City Council Public Safety Committee over proposed legislation, Intro. 487, that would create “comprehensive reporting and oversight of NYPD surveillance technologies. The NYPD took a stand against the bill, saying providing detailed information on technology would tip off criminals and terrorists and allow them to thwart investigations.
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Re: NYPD LIKELY TO ENCRYPT IN 2020

Postby cartman » Sun Dec 22, 2019 4:57 pm

https://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/ny ... story.html

NYPD eyeing encrypted radios to protect criminal investigations, not hide from the public, officials say

By ROCCO PARASCANDOLA,
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS |
DEC 19, 2019 | 5:27 PM

The NYPD is moving towards encrypting its radios to prevent criminals from listening, the department said Thursday.

The NYPD wants to encrypt its radios to prevent criminals from following their every move — not hide from the media, police officials insisted Thursday.

Deputy Commissioner John Miller noted the department already has several channels that allow law enforcement agencies, like the FBI and Secret Service, to communicate without worrying about crooks listening in.

“When you have sophisticated criminal organizations that are listening to your communications about them, that would only make sense,” Miller, head of the NYPD’s Counterterrorism and Intelligence Bureau, said Thursday.

Using a kidnapping investigation as an example, he added: “How do you conduct one of those over the radio when the whole world is listening for entertainment value?”

The NYPD’s plan to silence radio transmissions was first reported Wednesday by amNewYork.

A police source said the NYPD may start a pilot program next year to test a department-wide encryption program.

The 2017 mass shooting in Las Vegas, in which a gunman killed 58 people and wounded more than 400 victims after listening to police and hotel security radio dispatches, was a wake-up call for the NYPD, the source said.

“We can’t have criminals with better technology and tools available than police,” NYPD Police Commissioner Dermot Shea said.

Miller said the entire department is at least three years away from being fully encrypted, and noted that other police departments have made similar moves with "arrangements with the news media that made sense.”

Las Vegas police now use encrypted radios but allow the press to buy their own radios. In Knoxville, Tenn., police radio traffic is posted after a one-hour delay.

Reactions in different cities have varied, however, with police being accused of limiting journalists’ access and cutting the public off to information
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Re: NYPD LIKELY TO ENCRYPT IN 2020

Postby lolbananalol2 » Sun Dec 22, 2019 5:21 pm

This isn’t good at all. Isn’t there something that can be done to try and stop them?


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Re: NYPD LIKELY TO ENCRYPT IN 2020

Postby cartman » Sun Dec 22, 2019 5:30 pm

Note the contribution:
"Scanner 911, Broadcastify and several other apps currently stream police communications where they are not encrypted, leading some police agencies to seek encryption to shield confidential communications from prying ears"


Actually suprised that some of the larger cities in the US, like Los Angeles and New York, have remained in the clear for general policing for as long as they have.
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Scanners:
Uniden 325P2, Whistler TRX-1, GRE PSR800 x 2, Uniden 780 x 3, Uniden 796, Uniden 396 x 2, Uniden 246,
Software:
DSD v1.101, WinDSDv2, ADCR25 v5.10, Unitrunker, Trunkview
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Re: NYPD LIKELY TO ENCRYPT IN 2020

Postby Bigfella237 » Mon Dec 23, 2019 1:14 pm

cartman wrote: ~ Actually suprised that some of the larger cities ~ have remained in the clear ~ for as long as they have.


I was just about to say the same thing. To be honest, I assumed they've all been encrypted long before now.
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