[amsat-bb] Re: Australian Reciprocal Licensing Changes

Nate Duehr nate at natetech.com
Fri Feb 8 20:12:36 PST 2008

On Feb 8, 2008, at 9:15 AM, Trevor wrote:

> The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) has announced
> changes to the Amateur licence.
> Among the changes they now permit the Encoding, for the purpose of  
> Obscuring
> the meaning, of control signals for Amateur Satellites or unattended  
> stations.

All I have to say to this is FINALLY...

> Now, signals encoded for the purpose of obscuring the meaning may be  
> used
> for controlling a satellite or an unattended amateur stations or in  
> emergency
> operations.

Another VERY important piece of this:  Can also be used for emergency  
operations TRAINING.  (Train like you're going to fight... so to speak.)

The rest is also fascinating, but I've most impressed by the  
encryption lead the Aussies have taken.  I've been on the "reasonable  
encryption" bandwagon for digital modes for many MANY years now,  
saying so quite loudly in public.

Congratulations to the Aussies for doing it right... command and  
control of an unattended station has always been problematic and while  
the satellite folks got a dispensation from the FCC to do this long  
ago (for satellite control ops), us folks that run "community" systems  
terrestrially have often wished we could reasonably encrypt/obscure  
our command and control traffic.

Even if I have to store it, log it, whatever... I just hate playing  
the "security by obscurity" game with control frequencies, rolling  
control codes, and whatever.

It's just silly in the modern digital era where powerful encryption  
technologies have existed that are within reach for the average  
"Joe" (since the advent of Phil Zimmerman's PGP software) that control  
operations are still handled like some kind of back-alley speak-easy  
"secret code list" society.

Yay Aussies!

Nate Duehr, WY0X
nate at natetech.com

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