Tuesday, December 27, 2011

WDW Federal Frequencies?

A source recently sent me some frequencies in use at Walt Disney World, near Orlando, FL. I was surprised to find out there was a federal facility, of sorts, on the grounds of WDW! The facility is the Shades of Green Armed Forces Recreation Center (AFRC), operated by the the US Army's Family & Morale, Welfare and Recreation Command (FMWRC). Here are some links with more information:


Here are the frequencies that have been identified as being in use at the Shades of Green:

406.1625 / 415.1625, D125  Security
407.2250 / 416.2250, D754  Maintenance
407.2750 / 416.2750, D703  Housekeeping
406.1750 / 415.1750, D365  Unknown

407.2375 MHz may also be in use, but no DPL tone value has been recorded.

So next time you are near Orlando, give these a listen...

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas from The Fed Files

Thanks for all the great emails and reports from the loyal readers out there. Looking forward to more new and interesting federal intercepts in 2012!

Fed Files - January 2012 NYC Logs

In the January 2012 Fed Files column, I published a list of frequencies I logged during a recent trip to New York City for work. I included it in the column as a representation of the "raw" data I get from logs collected during my trips, but I started to identify some of the obvious frequencies and who they are used by.

Unfortunately, I included the list without finishing my identification tasks, and several sharp MT readers offered some suggestions. So here is the New York City list that was in the column, but with as many of the frequencies identified as I can. Keep in mind that these are simply what computer logged, and some of the P-25 NAC values may be incorrect. However, I usually disregard any NACs that appear only once. The NAC values listed appeared multiple times in the logs.

If you have any additional information on the unknown frequencies, please pass it along!

163.3750, D065 - Input to USPS on 166.3750 MHz
164.1000, N001 – US Secret Service
164.3375, D251 – Postal Service Brooklyn
164.4000, N001 – US Secret Service PAPA
164.6500, N001 – US Secret Service TANGO
165.2125, N001 - US Secret Service MIKE
165.2375, N301 – DHS CBP NET 1
166.3750, D065 – US Postal Service Manhattan
166.5625, N301 – DHS CBP (B16)
166.8875, 103.5  - UN Security Base
167.1250, 114.8 – US Postal Service, New Jersey
167.4625, N207 – DHS ICE Regional Network
167.5125, N167 - FBI Newark B3/B4
167.7875, N653 – NYC FIO Federal Interoperability repeater
167.8875, 127.3 – Input to 164.1875 MHz, UN Security
168.3000, N167 – FBI H3/H4
168.8250, N167 – FBI H1/H2
168.8250, N730 -
168.8875, N167 – FBI B7/B8
168.9125, N935 - DHS ICE, New York City
169.4500, 100.0 – DHS, CBP Customs NET 2
169.6250, N167 – FBI (not previously logged)
169.7000, N864 – DoJ, US Marshals Service
169.7250, N864 – DoJ, US Marshals Service
169.9750, N167 – FBI Newark A1/A2
169.9875, N4F9 - Department of the Interior, Liberty Island/Ellis Island
170.3750, N167 – FBI G5/G6
170.4250, N167 – FBI G3/G4
170.4250, N730-
170.5500, N167 - FBI G7/G8
170.5500, N730 -
170.6250, N167 – FBI C7/C8
170.6250, N730 -
171.1750, N653 – NYC Federal Interoperability FIO 2
171.4625, N24F - Unknown agency
171.5500, N167 - FBI C3/C4
171.5500, N673
171.6875, N173
171.6875, N9C5 – DHS ICE Regional Network, New Jersey NJ-1
171.7250, N159 - DHS ICE Regional Network, New Jersey NJ-2
172.1875, N167 - FBI B3/B4
172.5250, N167 – FBI B1/B2
172.6625, N615 - Reported as US Marshals NY-2
173.6625, N167 – FBI A1
173.6625, N673
173.6625, N730

406.1125, 82.5 - UN Maintenance
406.1500, N293 – VAMC Brooklyn
406.3375, N482 – US Postal Inspectors RED Net
406.4250, 67.0 - VA Maintenance
406.5000, N020 - BoP Metropolitan Detention Center, Brooklyn (*seemed to show this NAC on some transmissions)
406.5000, N2E1 - BoP Metropolitan Detention Center, Brooklyn
406.9250, N020*
406.9250, N2E1 - BoP Metropolitan Detention Center, Brooklyn
407.1375, N482 – US Postal Inspectors GREEN Net
407.2000, N293 – State Department Bureau of Diplomatic Security
407.4125, N1A3 - BoP Metropolitan Correctional Center, Manhattan
407.5000, 107.2 – VA NJ Maintenance
407.7250, N482 – US Postal Inspectors WHITE Net
407.7750, N482 – US Postal Inspectors BLUE Net
407.9500, N020*
407.9500, N2E1 – BoP Metropolitan Detention Center, Brooklyn
408.1000, N0F0 – State Department Bureau of Diplomatic Security
408.1250, N293 – VAMC Manhattan
408.2000, N270 - Federal Protective Service
408.2125, N020*
408.2125, N2E1 - BoP Metropolitan Detention Center, Brooklyn
408.3000, 74.4
408.4250, 67.0 - VA Manhattan, maintenance
408.5750, N020*
408.5750, N2E1 - BoP Metropolitan Detention Center, Brooklyn
408.8125, N1A3 - BoP Metropolitan Correctional Center, Manhattan
409.0250, 110.9 – Postal Service Flushing/Nassau
409.3250, 67.0 - VA maintenance
409.6250, N293 – State Department Bureau of Diplomatic Security
409.7500, N020*
409.9000, N1A3 - BoP Metropolitan Correctional Center, Manhattan
409.9375, N482 – US Postal Inspectors BLACK Net
410.4125, N1A3 - BoP Metropolitan Correctional Center, Manhattan
411.7375, 67.0
412.9750, N293
413.4125, N293 – VA Medical Center, New Jersey
413.8625, CSQ – VA Medical Center - Paging
413.8750, 67.0
413.9750, D271
414.6875, D503
414.8750, 173.8
414.9000, 156.7  - DEA
415.9000, 74.4
416.1375, N482 – US Postal Inspectors, input to 407.1375 MHz
416.7250, N482 – US Postal Inspectors, input to 407.7250 MHz
417.2000, N270 – Federal Protective Service
417.6000, N293 – State Department Bureau of Diplomatic Security
417.6500, 103.5
417.9125, 192.8
418.3500, 141.3
418.6250, 156.7 – DEA
418.6750, 156.7 – DEA F4
418.7500, 156.7 – DEA F3
418.7875, D125
418.9250, D731
418.9375, N482 – US Postal Inspectors, input to 409.9375 MHz
418.9500, 156.7 – DEA
419.7875, 67.0

Some have asked about the N730 NACs appearing on some of the FBI repeaters. I have noted these NACs for several years now, especially when I have been monitoring the New Years Eve happenings in Times Square. I suspect some sort of Special Operation or Task Force may be using a different NAC on these repeaters, but nothing has been confirmed - just a guess...

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

USCG NET 411 Confirmed

Back in April of 2010 I asked for some help in confirming some of the new UHF Coast Guard activity that has been monitored recently. There were reports that the Coast Guard helicopters in many areas are now carrying UHF land-mobile radios that are on various CG Nets in the 406-420 MHz band. The helicopters in the South Florida area were reported to be using NET 411, but the frequency was not known.

Recently a Coast Guard helicopter was heard in the South Florida area calling on 413.025 MHz, NAC293 and confirmed that this frequency is indeed NET 411. Here is a list of what I have confirmed in the UHF band so far. These UHF channels are usually P-25 using a NAC of 293 and simplex:

412.9750 - NET-409
413.0000 - NET-410
413.0250 - NET-411
416.5500 - NET-4xx

Friday, November 18, 2011

Cain Gets SS Protection

News reports are indicating that Herman Cain, GOP candidate for President, has started receiving protection from the US Secret Service.

“Secretary Napolitano at the request of the Cain campaign consulted with congressional advisory committee which today authorized protection for Cain.” – George Ogilvy, Secret Service spokesman.






At this point, only President Obama and Cain are receiving protective details from the Secret Service. No reports from the field of any call signs or radio traffic related to this detail.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Denver / Laramie Area Federal Logs

I recently traveled to Denver and drove up to the Laramie, WY area for work. While driving I was able to log some federal activity.

163.6250 MHz, 151.4pl - ICE repeater at Denver International (DEN), used by TSA
165.2875 MHz, N650 - BATFE
166.3000 MHz, 110.9pl - Rocky Mountain National Park
166.5875 MHz, N301 - CBP at Denver International (DEN)
167.4625 MHz, N167 - FBI, north of Denver?
167.7250 MHz, N385
167.9250 MHz, N555 - Western Area Power Administration (WAPA)
172.9000 MHz, N001 - TSA at Denver International (DEN)
418.6750 MHz, 156.7pl - DEA F4

Once north of the Denver area, I came across some federal channels that are apparently a trunked site that is part of the statewide WyoLink system. This site is called the Cheyenne Water Tank site:
169.6250 MHz, N1A3
169.7125 MHz, N1A3
169.7750 MHz, N1A3
170.0750 MHz, N1A3
170.3625 MHz, N1A3

Came across this VHF trunked system belonging to F.E. Warren AFB in Cheyenne. The listing for this system at Radio Reference shows only one site for this system in Cheyenne, but I picked up a second site as well:
138.1625 MHz, N150
138.2625 MHz, N150
138.4625 MHz, N150
138.8875 MHz, N150, P-25 System 154, Site 001

138.3375 MHz, N151, P-25 System 154, Site 002

And finally, while driving through the Cheyenne area, came across these conventional channels:
165.1125 MHz, NDEA
173.4625 MHz, NDEA
Yes, the P-25 NAC showed as "DEA". The frequencies are used by the Wyoming Air National Guard, so my guess is someone at the radio shop had a sense of humor.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Federal Spectrum Under Scrutiny


Over 1500 MHz worth of frequency spectrum assigned to the federal government is being considered for broadband data use.

While many of these chunks of radio spectrum are used for non-voice data, links and video surveillance, the 406.1 to 420 MHz band is heavily used for both federal and military trunking and conventional radio systems. Keep an eye out for upcoming changes in this band...

Friday, October 14, 2011

Atlantic City, NJ

During a recent trip through the Atlantic City, NJ area, I came across a few new federal frequencies:

163.1000, N167 - FBI, might be regional task force. This channel is active is many places across the country right now.
163.2250, 100.0pl - US Fish & Wildlife Service running surveillance on roadside fish sale. At one point  the channel was called "FARA Local" or something that sounded like that. Any ideas?
164.5625, N293 - US Coast Guard, NET 117.
165,1375, CSQ - NJ Air National Guard at ACY. Sounds like aircraft maintenance.
167.7750, N9C5 - DHS ICE Regional network
168.7500, N167 - FBI
172.2125, N9C5 - DHS ICE Regional network
172.8125, D754 - FAA or ANG - Patched to ACY ground.
172.9000, D315 - FAA Tech Center at Atlantic City International Airport. This is the analog portion of a mixed-mode repeater.
172.9000, N315 - FAA Tech Center, this is the P-25 side of the repeater.
173.4875, N293 - Someone at ACY, heard a "Clear To Lauch" message for ANG F-16's.
173.7875 - Unknown
345.0 MHz, AM - US Coast Guard helicopter ops.

Another POTUS Bus Tour

President Obama starts another bus tour of North Carolina and Virginia, beginning next Monday in Asheville, North Carolina;


Unknown if the Secret Service will be using the mega-buses they recently purchased for these bus tours.

Although I have family in Asheville and visit there often, I will miss this event...

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Atlanta P-25 UHF System

Over a month ago I was working north of Atlanta and found what appeared to be a multi-site, P-25 trunked system in the federal 406-420 MHz UHF band.

There are two UHF systems in the Atlanta metro area currently - a 4 site Motorola Type II system operated by the Federal Protective Service and used by Dobbins Air Reserve Base, and another Motorola Type II system operated by the Bureau of Prisons.

This new system is showing that it has 4 networked sites on the air. The site info I have so far:

System ID - 3B9
NAC - 3B1
Site 101 - 406.1125, 407.8125, 409.3000, 410. 0375
Site 102 - 408.8375
Site 103 - 406.7750, 408.4375, 408.6375
Site 104 - 408.8375
(Yes, both sites 102 and 104 show the same frequency for the control channel. They must be located far enough apart to re-use some frequencies.)

Traffic monitored so far has only used two talk groups, TG 100 and TG 200. The users are still unknown but traffic so far is mostly security checks to various building numbers. Radio procedure sounds possibly military. Also the broadcast band plan of the trunked system shows a 380 MHz channel level, so more circumstantial evidence of it being possibly DoD.

While there are several US Army installations around the Atlanta area, including Fort McPherson and Fort Gillem, they were reported to be using the FPS trunked system. Monitoring of the FPS trunked system showed no connectivity or patches to this P-25 system.

More information as it becomes available.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Operation Mountain Guardian 9/23/11


Operation Mountain Guardian is a terrorism-based emergency response drill that will be taking place in the Denver area this Friday, September 23rd. The drill involves many public safety agencies in the Denver Metro area and will include participation by federal agencies, including the FBI and Federal Protective Service.

This represents a rare opportunity to monitor the activities of the different agencies and see what is being used for communications. Be sure and keep an ear on the federal interoperability channels, as well as the DoJ "25-Cities" repeaters in the Denver area:

“DEN IO N” 170.6625 MHz (DENVER NORTH)
“DEN IO E” 171.9875 MHz (DENVER EAST)
“DEN IO S” 172.1875 MHz (DENVER SOUTH)
“DEN IO W” 167.2625 MHz (DENVER WEST)

Thursday, September 15, 2011

CBP Aquires New Blackhawks

The Customs & Border Protection Office of Air & Marine (OAM) has acquired 4 new UH-60M helicopters that were modified by the US Army at their Aviation and Missile Research Center at Redstone Arsenal near Huntsville, Alabama:


Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Mexican Cartel Radio Network

I have encountered news reports in the past that suggested some of the Mexican drug cartels were utilizing a wide-area, encrypted radio system to outsmart both the Mexican and US authorities. It appears that the Mexican military was able to take down this network:



Saturday, September 10, 2011

9/11 Anniversary Alerts

With the 9/11 10-Year Anniversary coming up tomorrow, many are speculating about the heightened security around the country, including federal and military installations.

There are news media reports that some "unsubstantiated yet credible" threats that have caused some increase in local, state and federal law enforcement activity. Keep searching the federal frequency bands for possible activity over the next 48 hours or so...

New USCP Radio System

The US Capitol Police are one of the federal agencies in the Washington, DC area that are still running analog radios. They have received some criticism for not yet upgrading to the federally backed APCO-P25 digital standard. But there appears to be change on the way.

A bid has been posted from the US Navy in Lakehurst, NJ for a multi-channel VHF P-25 system:


This system is part of the USCP radio modernization program and will be used by the US Capitol Police in the DC area. Some frequencies have been posted that are related to this new system:

Channel Number Transmit Receive
1 169.5750 162.2500
2 169.8375 162.6125
3 170.1375 162.8000
4 170.3750 163.1625
5 170.5750 163.6000
6 171.0000 164.0125
7 171.4125 164.3250
8 171.7875 164.6125
9 172.3875 164.8125
10 172.6875 165.0375
11 172.9625 165.5375
12 173.1625 165.7750
13 173.4750 166.2250
14 173.8125 166.4250

In addition to these trunked system frequencies, the bid proposes some "Travel Channels" to be used outside of the coverage of the DC system;

Travel 1: TX 168.3500 RX 163.1000
Travel 2: TX 173.5250 RX 166.4500
Travel 3: TX 173.8750 RX 166.4750

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Unknown P-25 UHF System

I'm down in the Norcross, GA area with the PGA Championship Golf TV coverage this week, and started picking up a UHF trunked system I have no info on.

I'm getting a control channel on 406.7750 MHz, P25 System ID of 3B9, WACN BEE00, Site 103. It shows connected to Site 101 (406.1125), Site 102 (408.8375) and Site 104 (408.8375). I'm thinking there might be some military connection as the tables show a 380 MHz band available.

It's not coming in super strong up here northeast of Atlanta, but it is consistent. None of these frequencies or system information shows up in Internet searches or Radio Reference.

My first thought was that they could be upgrading the Federal Protective Service trunked system in Atlanta to P-25. It is also a 4 site UHF system. But, when I drove up from the airport last week I don't recall coming across these trunked sites in my initial scan/search of the federal bands.

Anyone want to take a guess at who or what this system is and where it's located?

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

Border Activity

In addition to DHS Border Patrol traffic, some listeners have reported activity that may be related to National Guard support of border enforcement.

From Eagle Pass, Texas comes a report of 391.0500 MHz, P25 with a NAC of N500. The report says the traffic is encrypted full time and not from Laughlin AFB.

Reports also mention some unknown type digital traffic in the 380-400 MHz bands that are not P-25, and rumored to be coming from Piedras Negras, Mexico.

An alert reader pointed out that there is a wide-area TETRAPOL trunked system used by the Mexican Federal Police Forces, which may account for the unknown type digital traffic in the 390-400 MHz band.

Upcoming POTUS Bus Tour

An upcoming bus tour of the Midwest US has been announced by the White House. President Obama will embark on a three-day tour from August 15 through 17. The administration said Wednesday that the trip had long been planned, but wouldn’t outline an itinerary:


There is a line in the story that mentions that the "Secret Service purchased two armored buses for its fleet earlier this year". This could be an interesting opportunity for some listeners along the bus tour route to see what they have incorporated in these buses for communications.

Apparently the buses mentioned in the above article were purchased from this company:

They list several political tours as well as some federal government agencies as clients.

NOT the Presidential Tour bus, but an interesting possibility:


Well, not much reported from monitoring the POTUS bus tour of the midwest, but did get a real picture:

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Bureau of Prisons Changes

I have been seeing reports of changes occurring in some of the US Bureau of Prisons (BoP) UHF radio systems in use at federal prison facilities. In some cases some frequencies have been changed, in others the entire system seems to have been replaced.

Most recently I heard from a source in Southern California that the Metropolitan Correctional Center San Diego may have a new radio system going on line. A new Motorola control channel was heard on the air on 408.6125 MHz, with a System ID of F008. Later the control channel moved to 410.0000 MHz with the same System ID.

The original MCC trunked system in San Diego uses these frequencies:
System ID 6426

It would appear that the system is being replaced to conform with the federal UHF 9 MHz channel offset, with repeater outputs being at the low end of the spectrum, and the repeater inputs being +9 MHz.

Also, reports of a new UHF trunked system have been reported on Radio Reference. A control channel has been heard on 406.2125 MHz in the Fresno County area. The control channel is reporting a System ID of EE2B. Not confirmed but the speculation is that it will be used by the new FCI Mendota:



DEA News

A couple of items regarding the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

First, a reader sent me this link:


This is a document containing the minutes from a meeting of the Oklahoma Wireless Information Network (OKWIN) Executive Committee. In these minutes, the DEA requested access and talk groups on the new statewide radio system. This quote appeared in these minutes:

"The DEA currently has UHF frequencies to conduct daily business. They really want to use the system for interoperability, but see the benefits of using the system for day-to-day business so it would be “nice to have.” The DEA coverage is limited in the NW and SE areas of Oklahoma, just as the OKWIN system is limited. So there is no great increase in coverage area for them. Also, the DEA plans on using a new VHF system planned in the future and then only maintaining a presence on the OKWIN system for interoperability."

This triggered some questions about the DEA moving to a VHF radio system. I think they are referring to the DEA's participation in the federal VHF Integrated Wireless Network (IWN), of which the Department of Justice is the primary user. The DEA is using the IWN in areas that it is operational. (In the Pacific Northwest, the DEA had their UHF radios taken away years ago.) But in areas that are not served by the IWN (which is most of the country), they not only remain on UHF, but have started to migrate to new P-25 UHF frequencies.

Which brings us to the second item, and updated list of the UHF P-25 channels that listeners in Texas and other Gulf states are hearing:

409.6250 MHz, N156 - Possible new F1
409.6750 MHz, N156 - Possible new F6
409.8125 MHz, N156 - Possible new F7
409.8250 MHz, N156 - Possible new F8
409.9000 MHz, N156 - Possible new F9
409.9500 MHz, N156 - Repeater, possible new F10
410.4125 MHz, N156 - Repeater/simplex, new 11?
411.1250 MHz, N156 - Simplex 1?
411.1750 MHz, N156 - Simplex
412.2000 MHz, N156 - Simplex 2?
413.9750 MHz, N156 - Simplex 3?
414.2000 MHz, N156 - Simplex, possible new 4 or 5
414.4500 MHz, N156 - Simplex, possibly new 5
418.3250 MHz, N156 - Simplex or possible input to 409.3250 repeater (not heard)
418.6250 MHz, N156 - Input to 409.6250 repeater
418.6750 MHz, N156 - Input to 409.6750 repeater
418.8125 MHz, N156 - Input to 409.8125 repeater
418.8250 MHz, N156 - Input to 409.8250 repeater
418.9000 MHz, N156 - Input to 409.9000 repeater
418.9500 MHz, N156 - Input to 409.9500 repeater

It's also possible that the DEA will be going to the nomenclature of NET and TAC channels that many other DoJ agencies are now using. The NET channels will be repeaters and TAC channels being simplex.

Friday, July 29, 2011

DMAFB Trunked System Update

Just had a chance to monitor some changes at Davis Monthan Air Force Base in Tucson, Arizona. They have had a UHF Motorola trunked system there for a number of years, but now have started a separate P-25 UHF system as well.

The new system is using a System ID of 3F6 and the site at the base shows as Site 102. It is not showing as being networked with any other sites yet.

The frequencies are as follows:


All frequencies associated with this system were displaying a NAC of 3F0. These 4 frequencies were taken from the original DMAFB UHF system channels. It's unconfirmed, but this may be the start of converting the entire base to a single P-25 trunked system.

The system now has some limited users, and at least one talk group was being heard over both systems. But most of the activity is still on the original base trunked system:


Friday, July 22, 2011

Nellis AFB P-25 System Updates

Back in May, I posted some initial reports of an update to the UHF trunked system used by Nellis AFB in Las Vegas. You can find that post here.

I'm now in Las Vegas and have started monitoring and mapping this new system. The first item of note is that this is a separate, true P-25 trunked system and not part of the NNSA Motorola trunked system that Nellis was a subscriber to in the past. Some of the early information had listed this new System ID as "000F", but it is "00F", which indicates that it is a P-25 system (P-25 systems use a 3-digit system ID as opposed to a 4 digit ID used by Motorola Type II systems).

Here are the frequencies in use at Nellis now:


With the exception of 407.1875 and 407.5000, these frequencies were at one time all part of the NNSA Motorola trunked system that serves the entire southern Nevada area. This P-25 system appears to be standalone and is not networked to any other sites.

The original NNSA Site 10 that covered Nellis is now on the air on 408.3875 MHz, and appears to still be in use by a few users.

FEMA Mobile Units

Saw this web page on a recent list posting and thought it was interesting;


It's a nice look at FEMA's Mobile Emergency Response Support (MERS) command units and the various versions and sizes that they come in.

UPDATE: Fixed the messed up link I had earlier.

Monday, July 18, 2011

CBP Announce New MEA

U.S. Customs and Border Protection announced today its new King Air 350, twin engine Multi-role Enforcement Aircraft (MEA), providing the Department of Homeland Security unmatched capabilities to patrol the skies along the nation’s land and maritime borders.

Full story here:


Another 414.5625 Report

I have monitored some encrypted P-25 transmissions in the Houston area on 414.5625 MHz with a NAC of N168. Others have also heard it in use in the Charlotte, NC area. I've recently received a report of encrypted traffic on this same frequency in the Boston area, however reports are that the NAC was showing N169. It's possible that whatever agency this is has multiple NACs for different repeaters in the area.

Still no indication as to what agency this is...

Saturday, July 02, 2011

Royals Visiting California

Members of the British Royal Family will visiting the Southern California area this coming week, and it could make for some interesting monitoring.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will arrive in Los Angeles on July 8. Their schedule calls for several days of travel and appointments around LA and other cities;

Both Secret Service and Department of State Bureau of Diplomatic Security have possible involvement in security operations for the Royal visit, but media reports have mentioned the DoS as being the agency for this trip.

If scanning the visit, be sure and keep an ear on local and CHP channels for activity, and search the UHF federal band (406-420 MHz) for State Department activity. And don't forget there will most likely be some British Royal security presence as well. The last time I ran into British VIP security in the US they were using some 160 MHz frequencies.

For a list of Secret Service channels, you can check my previous post,

Here is a quick list of possible Department of State Bureau of Diplomatic Security frequencies. They should be all P-25 digital and utilize a NAC of either N293 or N0F0. Be sure and let me know what you hear active:






























Saturday, June 18, 2011

NYC Updates on RR

Some additional, anonymous federal frequencies have been added to the New York City frequency database on Radio Reference:


Sifting through the updates, I spotted a couple of interesting items. First, if the contributor is accurate, several VHF P-25 channels that I have caught in the past using a NAC of 864 are identified as being the US Marshals Service, New York. They have been active, but due to encryption, the identity was unknown. Also unknown if this is a NAC used by the USMS nationwide.

Secondly, there are 9 VHF channels listed as being "Federal Interoperability" frequencies. I have noted one or two of these frequencies active during the weekly tests, but some of these are previously unknowns, or used by other agencies. Keep an ear on these and let me know if they are active;

164.4750, N653 (Also used by the National Parks Service in New Jersey)
166.5375, N653* (See Update below)
166.7500, N653
167.3500, N653
167.7875, N653 FI/O 1 (Weekly interoperability roll call tests heard here)
168.6625, N653
171.1125, N653
171.1750, N653 FI/O 2 (Heard during New Years Eve in Times Square events)
172.2875, N653

The frequency of 414.7500 MHz, 82.5pl was also utilized for interoperability tests in the past.

It slipped past me initially, but I was reminded that the frequency of 166.5375 MHz is actually the input to the BATFE nationwide repeater of 165.2875 MHz. The BATFE uses a NAC of 650 on the repeater output, but uses various NAC's from 650-65A on the inputs. I suspect that they are using 166.5375 MHz, NAC 653 as the input to the BATFE repeater in the area, and the listener assumed that the NAC of 653 meant it was part of the Federal Interop channels.

Also, the inputs for the two known federal interop repeaters are not among the channels that were posted on RR. The input to the 167.7875 MHz repeater is 164.7375 MHz, and the input to the 171.1750 MHz repeater is 162.2875 MHz.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

EPA Flys Over Dallas

Apparently in preparation for the celebrations of the Dallas Mavericks NBA Championship, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will be doing low-level flights over the downtown Dallas, Texas area;


The flights are for sampling air and other environmental readings in order to detect anything unusual that might be released, either intentionally or accidentally.

The next Fed Files column will feature a profile of EPA radio channels. I have not received any information on what the EPA flights in Dallas might be using.

TSA Conducts Multi-State Exercise

If you think the TSA only functions at your local airport, think again:



As of Wednesday, June 15th, eports are that this was a multi-state exercise involving the VIPR (Visible Intermodal Prevention and Response) teams. The exercise involved inspections of power and chemical plants, rail terminals and shipping terminals, lock and dam complexes and natural gas pipelines. The exercise also involved local and state agencies as well.

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

DEA Changes in Dallas

Listener reports from the Dallas/Ft. Worth Metroplex seem to indicate that the DEA is starting to use some of it's new P-25 UHF frequency assignments there.

After many reports from the Houston area and other Gulf regions of the new UHF frequencies, reports are that 413.9750 MHz, NAC156 is in use around DFW. The original UHF channels are also still in use in analog mode as well.

For a complete listing of what's been found on the new UHF channels so far, check out this previous blog post:

Saturday, May 28, 2011

POTUS Visit to Joplin, MO

After the terrible devastation of the tornadoes in Joplin, Missouri, it appears that a presidential visit is on tap for Sunday, May 29th. A TFR has been issued for the area:


If anyone is in the area and can provide any details of emergency communications in the Joplin region following the disaster, please pass them along to us at the Fed Files!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Las Vegas NNSA TRS Updates?

I am seeing posts over on Radio Reference that there may be changes afoot for the Las Vegas area UHF trunked system operated by the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA). Until recently, the NNSA operated the wide-area UHF trunked system that was utilized by Nellis AFB as a subscriber agency.

Now reports are that a new UHF trunked system has come on the air, using the System ID of 00F, NAC of 00F. Site 1 is reported using these frequencies:

406.7875 CC

Some replies indicate that this new system is a separate system for military use only and that Nellis will no longer be a subscriber to the NNSA system,

If anyone in the Las Vegas area can keep me posted on this change, please send them along to The Fed Files.

I took a look at the frequencies that have been posted as part of this new "000F" trunked system and see that most of them were part of the NNSA trunked system site 10, that was assumed to be located and service Nellis Air Force Base. 410.6500 MHz, was logged with some activity in Las Vegas a while back, but was not part of the NNSA system as far as I could tell.

So I'm wondering if Site 10 of the NNSA system is still on the air on any frequencies? They might have migrated the Nellis site off to it's own system, since it was probably the busiest site in the NNSA system.

There was a post on Radio Reference that indicated this was a move towards providing common trunked systems for Nellis AFB, NAS Fallon and US Navy carrier operations. Not sure if this makes any sense, but I have no information on this change as being part of any larger Navy system.

Friday, May 06, 2011

NE Florida USCG

I'm in the Jacksonville, FL area for a while and caught some Coast Guard traffic on both VHF and UHF channels recently.

162.3250 MHz, N293 NET111 - SECTOR JACKSONVILLE with various CG assets. SECTOR in the clear, but field units always encrypted.

412.9750 MHz, N293 NET409 - SECTOR JACKSONVILLE with what seemed to be CG helicopters, usually CG6xxx numbers. Again, SECTOR JAX in the clear with others secure. The NET number was confirmed by the SECTOR JAX radio operator, and also confirms another rumor that the CG UHF channels are being used primarily by airborne assets of the Coast Guard.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

TSA - All Frequency Updates Here!

Since I featured a list of TSA frequencies heard at various airports in the March 2011 Fed Files, I decided to post the list here and update it with frequencies that have been sent to me.

I discovered I had several TSA related lists going on the bog, so from now on, this will be the most up to date.

All TSA Updates will be updated to this blog post.

If you have any additional TSA channels you have found active, send them along.

When searching for TSA activity, always assume that the TSA at your local airports will have some of these four frequencies in use:
166.4625 MHz
169.3000 MHz
172.1500 MHz
172.9000 MHz

In addition, here are some of the "secondary" frequencies that have been identified as TSA at various airports:
166.2875  MHz
166.7875  MHz
168.0875  MHz
168.8375  MHz
168.9625  MHz
169.1625  MHz

Here are additional channels that have been identified at various airports as being TSA operations. If the channel is designated with a CTCSS tone, it is an analog channel using voice-inversion scrambling. P-25 channels are noted with the appropriate NAC. The analog channels are usually the security checkpoint screeners using Icom F-50v radios. The additional P-25 channels are usually the operators of the full-body scanners communicating with the checkpoints. The operators of these devices are located in a separate area away from the security checkpoints.

Asheville, NC (AVL)
172.9000, N001

Atlanta, GA (ATL)
172.9000, N001

Bloomington, IN (BMI)
172.9000, N001

Boston, MA (BOS)
163.3125, 136.5 PL
166.2875, N001
166.4625, 103.5 PL
168.0875, N003
168.9625, N001
169.1625, N001
169.1625, N003
171.7625, 146.2 PL
172.1500, 103.5 PL
172.1500, 123.0 PL

Chicago, IL O’Hare (ORD)
165.0750, 123.0 PL
165.0750, 131.8 PL
166.4625, 103.5 PL
166.2875, N004
168.9625, N001
169.1625, 123.0 PL
169.1625, N001
169.3000, 136.5 PL
172.1500, 103.5 PL
172.1500, 123.0 PL
172.1500, 136.5 PL
172.9000, 136.5 PL

Cincinnati, OH (CVG)
166.2875, N003 - Scanner operators
169.1625, N003 - Scanner operators
172.9000, N001

Dallas / Ft. Worth, TX (DFW)
168.0875, N004
169.9125, 123.0 PL – TSA Terminal E
170.3375, N001 – TSA “Coordination Center”
170.9375, N004
173.7750, N004

Denver, CO (DEN)
163.6250, 151.4 PL – Behavior Detection Officers using ICE repeater at DEN airport
166.4625, N001 – Scanner operators
172.1500, 123.0 PL
172.1500, 131.8 PL
172.1500, 136.5 PL

Des Moines, IA (DSM)
172.9000, N001 - repeater

Ft. Meyers, FL (RSW)
169.3000, N001
169.3000, 123.0 PL - Checkpoint C
172.9000. N001

El Paso, TX (ELP)
166.2875, N002 - Backscatter X-ray operators
172.1500, N001

Gulfport/Biloxi, MS (GPT)
172.9000, 162.2 PL

Houston, TX Hobby (HOU)
166.2875, N003
169.1625, N001

Houston, TX Bush (IAH)
169.3000, 123.0 PL

Indianapolis, IN (IND)
169.3000, 136.5 PL
172.1500, 146.2 PL
172.9000, 151.4 PL

Jacksonville, FL (JAX)
169.3000, N001
172.1500, 146.2 PL
172.9000, 162.2 PL

Las Vegas, NV (LAS)
166.2875, N002
166.4625, N001
168.0875, N002
168.9625, N001
168.9625, N002

Los Angeles, CA (LAX)
166.7875, 123.0 PL – Terminal 3
168.9625, N001
168.9625, N002 - Scanner operators
169.1625, N001
172.1500, 131.8 PL – Terminal 7

Nashville, TN (BNA)
168.0875, 123.0 PL
172.9000. N001

Philadelphia, PA (PHI)
168.0875, N002 - B Concourse scanner operators
168.8375, N002 - C Concourse scanner operators
171.7625, 131.8 PL - B & C Checkpoints

Phoenix, AZ (PHX)
168.0875, N003
170.1625, N001 - Terminal A Backscatter X-ray operators

Portland, OR (PDX)
169.3000, 146.2 PL – Checkpoint D-E
172.1500, 123.0 PL – Checkpoint A-B-C
(Also using talk groups on the IWN trunked system)

Salt Lake City, UT (SLC)
172.1500, 123.0 PL
172.1500, N001

San Francisco, CA (SFO)
162.2750, 131.8 PL
172.9000, 123.0 PL
172.9000, N001 - Wide area repeater serving San Francisco and Oakland airports

San Antonio, TX (SAT)
172.9000, N001
Santa Anna, CA (SNA)
172.1500, 123.0 PL
172.1500, 131.8 PL
172.9000, N001
172.9000, 146.2 PL
172.9000, 151.4 PL

 St. Louis, MO (STL)
164.7875, 131.8 PL - A Checkpoint
169.1625, 123.0 PL
172.1500, N001
172.1500, N004
172.1500, 123.0 PL

Seattle, WA (SEA)
168.6125, N001 - Behavior Detection Officers

Tampa, FL (TPA)
166.2875, N001 
168.0875, N004
169.1625, N001
169.3000, N009
169.3000, 123.0 PL
169.3000, 131.8 PL
169.3000, 136.5 PL - Terminal C
172.1500, N001
172.1500, N002
172.1500, N003
172.1500, N004
172.1500, 123.0 PL - Terminal F
172.1500, 131.8 PL - Terminal E
172.1500, 136.5 PL
172.9000, N001 - New wide area repeater
172.9000, N002
172.9000, 151.4 PL - Terminal A
172.9000, 162.2 PL

Tucson, AZ (TUS)
166.4625, N001
169.3000, 123.0 PL

Washington, DC Reagan National Airport (DCA)
172.1500, 136.5 PL
172.9000, N001
172.9000, N013


I recently received a report of someone hearing what sounded like MOTO TRBO digital traffic on 172.9000 MHz in the Southeast Florida area. This frequency is one of the primary TSA channels used at airports across the country.

It would be strange for the TSA to move to TRBO digital radios, as they are part of the Department of Homeland Security, which is committed to utilizing APCO P-25 digital modes for federal interoperability and have been using P-25 digital radios since they came into existence. Plus the TSA has recently tested the addition of OTAR (over-The-Air Re-keying) of the encryption keys on their P-25 radio systems.

However, since the TSA also decided a few years ago to start equipping security checkpoint screeners with Icom F-50V radio with analog voice-inversion, I guess anything is possible.

Has anyone else caught what might be TRBO digital on any TSA channels? Looking for updates...

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

FEMA Deploys to Texas Wildfires? -UPDATE

In a rare move, FEMA has declared the Texas wildfires a "Major Disaster" and deployed a mobile command post to the Mineral Wells, Texas area.

Monitors report that the FEMA CP is probably one of the MERS Teams vehicles. They have spotted a mobile truck with two pneumatic masts that support communications antennas. No mention was made in the reports I saw of any satellite dishes, but most if not all of the FEMA mobile units carry satellite dishes.

Only frequencies heard so far that might be connected to the FEMA deployment were 163.1000 MHz and 866.0125 MHz. More as reports come in...

UPDATE - It appears that the original source now says this may not be FEMA's mobile command post operating on location in Texas, despite that fact that Texas has requested FEMA assistance in the fires:


The mobile units spotted in the Mineral Wells area has been described as not looking like the FEMA MERS vehicles I mentioned above. However, reports continue to indicate plenty of state and federal frequencies are in use in the firefighting efforts. You can follow the updates at this link on Radio Reference:


UPDATE II - Here are some additional frequencies passed along to me by a source on the ground. These were monitored near the Possum Kingdom Lake fires:

163.1000 MHz, CSQ - Aircraft/direct
166.9375 MHz, CSQ - Air-attack to ground units/main/direct/VERY active
168.0125 MHz, CSQ - Aircraft/direct
168.0500 MHz, CSQ - Ground units/direct
168.1000 MHz, 123.0 PL - Command/operations/repeater and direct/heard from
70 miles away either east or west.
168.2000 MHz, CSQ - Ground units/direct

Monday, April 04, 2011

DoJ Buys E.F. Johnson Radios


The Department of Justice Wireless Management Office has purchased an unknown number of E.F. Johnson branded P-25 radios. This report indicates these radio will be used primarily by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).

NCAA Final Four Houston

From the looks of the on-line posting, the Final Four games in Houston this past weekend were loaded with local and federal radio action. As I posted, a lot of federal law enforcement activities were planned for the weekend of the Final Four games, called by some as "Super Bowl levels" of federal planning.

The folks in and around Houston did a nice job of keeping the scanners going and even posted what they heard in a wiki article on Radio Reference:


One interesting item that was noted during all the activities was some clear traffic that referenced some Department of Energy personnel involved with federal activities, possible monitoring for radiation levels. There was some activity noted on 171.2000 MHz, analog, and that is a nationwide DoE allocation. I did not see anything noted, but would not be surprised if there was some Enviromental Protection Agency (EPA) activity during the weekend as well...

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Justice Department "25 Cities Project"

I've written about the DoJ "25 Cities" federal interoperability project in several Fed Files columns, but thought I would post some information here as well.

Some information on the “25 Cities Project” is available on the Internet, but much of it has not been updated in years, and may not reflect the actually current project status:





Web pages and documents available on line now do not have any frequency information available in them, but confirmation from local monitoring and some have verified frequencies for these DOJ radio systems. Here is a rundown of the cities involved in the “25 Cities” project, and what the known radio systems are. Unless noted with a CTCSS tone squelch value, all these repeaters are using P-25 digital mode with a P-25 Network Access Code or NAC of N653.


“ATL FIO” 170.4750 MHz


“BAL FIO” 170.6625 MHz


Reports from local listeners in the Boston area have reported that the “Boston FIO” channel has had very little use in recent times. The frequency was derived from a US Coast Guard channel used for natural gas terminal operations, but since the Coast Guard has started using the new P-25 “CG NET” channels, traffic on this frequency has pretty much dried up.

“BOS FIO” 165.3250 MHz

“BAPERN FIO” 167.4375 MHz, 167.9 pl–patch to BAPERN 470.7875

“BPD FIO” 158.9100 MHz


Federal agencies in the Charlotte region have access to the large Charlotte-Mecklenburgh County trunked radio system. A cache of portable 800 MHz trunked radios is provided to agencies such as DHS CBP & ICE, DEA, US Marshals Service, the Secret Service and the North Carolina Air National Guard.









“DFW EAST” 170.7250 MHz

“DFW WEST” 171.4375 MHz


Originally the project described the Denver Metro area as being served by a pool of 800 MHz trunked radios programmed to operate on local public safety trunked systems. It now appears that the 25 Cities Project has opted to install 5 VHF P-25 repeaters located around the Denver metro area.

“DEN IO N” 170.6625 MHz (DENVER NORTH)

“DEN IO E” 171.9875 MHz (DENVER EAST)


“DEN IO S” 172.1875 MHz (DENVER SOUTH)

“DEN IO W” 167.2625 MHz (DENVER WEST)


In the first version of the 25 Cities Project, federal interoperability in both the Detroit area and Michigan statewide was supported through the Michigan Public Safety Communications System (MPSCS). However, new information indicates that Detroit will also be getting a stand-alone VHF repeater for federal interoperability communications.

“DET FIO” 170.5625 MHz


The Hampton Roads/Norfolk metropolitan area is using a single VHF repeater for federal interop use. Listeners have reported both clear and encrypted traffic on this channel, as well as weekly check-ins between the various agencies utilizing this system.

“HRN FIO” 165.7000 MHz


In addition to having access to the local public-safety radio systems, federal agencies in Honolulu have several VHF repeaters for federal interoperability. The “LE-4” repeater is part of the NTIA nationwide interoperability channels available to both federal and non-federal agencies.

“HNL FIO” 170.6250 MHz

“HNL FIO 2” 168.9875 MHz

“LE-4” 168.1125 MHz, N68F

“HNL FIRE” 154.280 MHz, D364


Two VHF repeaters in the Houston area are now available for federal agency interoperability. These frequencies have also been referred to by FBI units as “L1” and “L2”, which are the channel numbers in the FBI radios that were originally testing these repeaters. The channel names are short for COMMAND and PATCH.

“HOU CMD” 170.7250 MHz

“HOU PAT” 171.4375 MHz


A single VHF repeater serves the Jacksonville area federal interoperability needs. This repeater can be patched to other area pubic safety radio systems if needed. The US Navy facilities in Jacksonville and Mayport have control stations that access this repeater.

“JAX FIO” 171.4375 MHz


Two standalone VHF P-25 repeaters in the Los Angeles area service the 25 Cities Project:

“LA FIO 1” 163.1000 MHz

“LA FIO 2” 172.4125 MHz

In addition to these federal repeaters, the Los Angeles Regional Tactical Communications System (LARTCS) has been providing interoperability between federal, state and local agencies. The federal “25 Cities” frequencies listed above do not appear to be part of the LARTCS. Here is a rundown of the LARTCS frequencies that can be patched together:

California National Guard 036.5000 MHz

HEAR 155.3400 MHz

NALEMARS 155.4750 MHz, 156.7 PL

Coast Guard Channel 23A 157.1750 MHz

LA INTEROP D 159.0300 MHz

LA INTEROP C 159.1800 MHz

Federal UHF I/O 406.8000 MHz, 156.7 PL

LACSO MA-1 483.5875 MHz, 186.2 PL

LACSO MA-2 484.0875 MHz, 186.2 PL

LACSO MA-3 483.7875 MHz, 186.2 PL

LACSO MA-4 484.1375 MHz, 186.2 PL

LACSO MA-5 484.0625 MHz, 186.2 PL

I-CALL 866.0125 MHz, 156.7 PL

CLEMARS 8 868.5125 MHz, 156.7 PL


“MIA FIO” 171.4375 MHz


The original rundown of cities for the 25 Cities Project did not include the Minneapolis / St. Paul Metro area. Since then, the Twin Cities have apparently been elevated to be among the 25 “high-risk” cities (Sharp Fed Files readers will note that this brings the total number of cities to 26!). Both of these repeaters were heard on the air during the Republican Convention in late 2008:

“FEDCOM MP” 170.6250 MHz

“FEDCOM SP” 171.6125 MHz


“NOLA FIO” 171.4375 MHz


The Big Apple has three repeaters available as a federal interoperability system. The VHF repeaters are using P-25 digital and the UHF repeater is analog. Also, I was recently advised of another VHF P-25 channel that might be linked to these. The frequency 173.8625 MHz, N653 was heard active, but unknown if this is a permanent part of the NYC Federal Interoperability nets.

“NYC FIO” 167.7875 MHz

“NYC FIO2” 171.1750 MHz

“NYC FIO” 414.7500 MHz, 82.5 PL


“PH FIO” 171.4375 MHz


Federal interoperability communications in Phoenix can use multiple radio systems. One is the Inter-Agency Radio System, or IARS. This is a series of VHF and UHF repeaters tied together to link agencies with dissimilar radio bands. Federal agencies also have radio consoles and portable radios on the Phoenix Regional Wireless Network (PWRN) and the Mesa Trunked Open Arizona Network (TOPAZ).


Federal agencies operating in the Portland area have access to the local 800 MHz public safety trunking systems. There are talk groups allocated for the various agencies sue, as well as control stations and radios available. The federal IWN trunked system is operational in and around the Portland metro area and there is some interconnection available between the IWN P-25 trunked system and the Portland area 800 MHz radio systems.


San Diego area federal agencies can make use of the San Diego City and County 800 MHz trunked systems with control station and portable radio access. Communications dispatchers also have the ability to patch from their trunked systems to some federal “mutual aid” or “multi-agency” channels. These channels are not directly related to the “25 Cities Project”, but are part of the DHS Border Patrol P-25 network throughout southern California. Listeners have reported patches between these federal frequencies and other agencies:

“MA-4 SP” 166.9125 MHz, N245

“MA-4 PM” 167.3750 MHz, N249

“MA-4 DM” 167.5250 MHz, N247

“MA-4 MCC” 167.7250 MHz, N244

“MA-4 CP” 170.8375 MHz, N248

“MA-1 CP” 171.1750 MHz, N362

“MA-1 PM” 172.2875 MHz, N363

“MA-1 SP” 172.4500 MHz, N148


The Bay Area recently received some upgrades to their federal interoperability system. There now appear to be 2 VHF and 2 UHF federal repeaters in both analog and P-25 digital:

“SF FED-V” 171.6127 MHz

“SF FED-U” 410.4125 MHz

“SF MA V-A” 168.7625 MHz, 167.9 pl

“SF MA U-A” 409.0125 MHz, 167.9 pl

In addition to these federal repeaters, the interoperability system includes these state and nationwide public safety channels:

“CELMARS 7” / “LLAW” 045.8600 MHz, 156.7 pl

“SF MA T-A” 483.1375 MHz, 156.7 pl

“8TAC94” 851.0125 MHz, 156.7 pl / 866.0125 MHz, 156.7 pl


The Seattle / Tacoma, WA metropolitan areas are served with several large 800 MHz trunked radio systems. Federal interoperability in these cities relies on control stations and portable radios that can access these trunked systems. It also involves patches to these systems as well as the federal IWN trunked system.


“STL CALL” 171.4375 MHz

“STL TAC” 171.6875 MHz


“TAM FIO” 171.6875 MHz


“DCIO 1” 159.1500 MHz, MPD Citywide Patch

“DCIO 2” 168.8750 MHz

In addition to the above interoperability channels, there were plans for three additional repeaters, but they do not appear to be on the air at the time I compiled this list. Can anyone in the DC area confirm any activity on these frequencies?

“DCIO 2 N” 173.7500 MHz

“DCIO 2 S” 168.0875 MHz

“DCIO 2 W” 166.7875 MHz