Town Square

Post a New Topic

Radio silence: As police encrypt dispatch transmissions, questions build on the public's right to know

Original post made on Jan 29, 2021

Police departments throughout the Midpeninsula are following Palo Alto police, which on Jan. 5 abruptly announced it would immediately encrypt its dispatch radio communications, to protect certain private information.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, January 29, 2021, 1:53 PM

Comments (2)

Posted by Raymond
a resident of Monta Loma
on Jan 29, 2021 at 2:44 pm

Raymond is a registered user.

LaDoris Cordell and the newsies have it exactly right: encryption of all police radio transmissions allows police departments to hide too much. Any possibly sensitive or embarrassing information will be hidden and not otherwise released by the police departments. It may take a little time, but not much to significantly decrease the transparency provided by real time revelations, which allow follow-up questions. If they can't get software that allows some, but not most communications to be encrypted, maybe they should go shopping a little further.

Posted by Otto Maddox
a resident of Monta Loma
on Jan 30, 2021 at 8:07 am

Otto Maddox is a registered user.

This is just silly.

This is the police not wanting people to be able to easily follow what they're up to. Sure all the comms are recorded and can be requested through public records requests but that's a hassle.

What I think really drove this was internet apps taking it to the masses. Before that you had to at least buy a scanner and find the frequencies. It was a little work at least.

Still.. our police do not work in secret. We should be able to monitor what they are doing in our neighborhoods.

Don't miss out on the discussion!
Sign up to be notified of new comments on this topic.


Post a comment

In order to encourage respectful and thoughtful discussion, commenting on stories is available to those who are registered users. If you are already a registered user and the commenting form is not below, you need to log in. If you are not registered, you can do so here.

Please make sure your comments are truthful, on-topic and do not disrespect another poster. Don't be snarky or belittling. All postings are subject to our TERMS OF USE, and may be deleted if deemed inappropriate by our staff.

See our announcement about requiring registration for commenting.

Get the most important local news stories sent straight to your inbox daily.

A fond farewell from the Peninsula Foodist
By | 12 comments | 3,979 views

Palo Alto Utilities breeds mistrust with lack of transparency around outages
By Sherry Listgarten | 28 comments | 3,188 views

Palo Alto has an escalating transparency problem -- the police have shut their doors
By Diana Diamond | 6 comments | 1,514 views

By Chandrama Anderson | 2 comments | 988 views

My letter to council on PHZ zoning
By Steve Levy | 0 comments | 56 views