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The planes use devices made by Boeing Co that mimic the cell phone towers used by major telecommunications companies and trick mobile phones into revealing their unique registration data, the report said. The devices, nicknamed "dirtboxes," can collect information from tens of thousands of cell phones in a single flight, which occur on a regular basis, according to those with knowledge of the program, the Journal said.
It said a Justice Department official would not confirm or deny the existence of such a program, saying such discussion would allow criminal suspects or foreign powers to determine U.S.
The program is similar to one used by the National Security Agency which collects the phone records of millions of Americans in order to find a single person or a handful of people.
The Journal cited the people familiar with the program as saying that the device used in the program decides which phones belong to suspects and "lets go" of non-suspect phones.
Although it can interrupt calls on some phones, authorities have made software changes to make sure it doesn't interrupt anyone calling the 911 emergency number for help, one person familiar with the matter said, the Journal reported. It also bypasses telephone companies, allowing authorities to locate suspects directly, people with knowledge of the program said. The Journal quoted Christopher Soghoian, chief technologist at the American Civil Liberties Union, as calling it "a dragnet surveillance program. The newspaper said it was unknown what steps are being taken to ensure data collected on innocent people is not kept for future perusal by authorities.
Les Goldsmith, the CEO of ESD America, used ESD's CryptoPhone 500 to detect 17 bogus cellphone towers. The towers were found in July, but the report implied that there may have been more out there. Although it is unclear who owns the towers, ESD found that several of them were located near U.S. Apr 12, 2012 · Verizon Wireless Cell Phones: What Is The Fake Call Function On My Phone?
Sign up to get exclusive access to VIP events, contests, coupons, giveaways, presales and much more! When you have confirmed your password, you will be able to log in through Facebook on both sites. Sign up to have exclusive 1420 Club contests, events, coupons, presales, and much more delivered to you for FREE. TweetA study that was conducted by the Pew Research Center Project concluded that 13% of cell phone users place fake calls to avoid conversation. I have placed fake phone calls on occasions to avoid certain people who just love to engage in full fledged conversations about nothing. Since then, ESD America has been the source of every story about the fake cell towers, gradually releasing details of the towers as the phone's owners discover new locations.
If your phone connects to a fake cell tower, whoever operates the device can listen to your calls, intercept your text messages, and send fake text messages to your phone.
Active GSM Interceptors: A GSM interceptor can act as a "man in the middle" to intercept cellphone traffic between two devices. Fake cell phone towers are a big problem in China, where it's common for scammers to use these devices to trick people into handing over their credit card details,A according to a report on The Verge.A Cell phones automatically connect to the strongest available signal, meaning that it's easy for criminals to gain access to cell phones and send fake messages requesting card information if they're close to a target cell phone. Criminal gangs:A One of the likeliest theories behind the fake cell towers is that they're used by criminal gangs to send spam text messages en masse to American citizens. The police:A It has been speculated that the "Interceptor" towers are part of a new surveillance network used by local police forces to keep track of citizens and possibly even spy on their phone calls.
Foreign spies:A It's been speculated that foreign governments have formed this network of fake cell towers across America in order to track cellphone location and intercept calls. The government:A Every time there's talk of someone spying on our phone calls, the blame is usually placed on the NSA or another government surveillance institution.
Conveniently, Goldsmith's opinion served to bring the cell towers back into the spotlight, as the idea that a foreign government is using fake cell towers to spy on Americans is a terrifying prospect. Ultimately, there are no photographs of the towers and ESD America has not released the exact location of any Interceptor devices.
Are strange imposter cell phone towers discovered across the country part of a secret government surveillance program?
The atmospheric attenuation of microwaves in dry air with a precipitable water vapor level of 0.001 mm. Microwave transmission refers to the technology of transmitting information or energy by the use of electromagnetic waves whose wavelengths are conveniently measured in small numbers of centimetre; these are called microwaves. Microwaves are widely used for point-to-point communications because their small wavelength allows conveniently-sized antennas to direct them in narrow beams, which can be pointed directly at the receiving antenna.
Another advantage is that the high frequency of microwaves gives the microwave band a very large information-carrying capacity; the microwave band has a bandwidth 30 times that of all the rest of the radio spectrum below it. Microwave radio transmission is commonly used in point-to-point communication systems on the surface of the Earth, in satellite communications, and in deep space radio communications.
A parabolic satellite antenna forErdfunkstelle Raisting, based inRaisting, Bavaria, Germany. C band horn-reflector antennas on the roof of a telephone switching center inSeattle, Washington, part of the U.S. To direct microwaves in narrow beams for point-to-point communication links or radiolocation (radar), a parabolic antennais usually used.
Microwave radio relay is a technology for transmitting digital and analog signals, such as long-distance telephone calls, television programs, and computer data, between two locations on a line of sightradio path.
Because the radio waves travel in narrow beams confined to a line-of-sight path from one antenna to the other, they don't interfere with other microwave equipment, and nearby microwave links can use the same frequencies. Because of the high frequencies used, a quasi-optical line of sight between the stations is generally required. Obstacles, the curvature of the Earth, the geography of the area and reception issues arising from the use of nearby land (such as in manufacturing and forestry) are important issues to consider when planning radio links. In over-horizon, or tropospheric scatter, microwave radio relays, unlike a standard microwave radio relay link, the sending and receiving antennas do not use a line of sight transmission path. Though not commonly known, the US Military used both portable and fixed-station microwave communications in the European Theater during WWII. Similar systems were soon built in many countries, until the 1980s when the technology lost its share of fixed operation to newer technologies such as fiber-optic cable and communication satellites, which offer lower cost per bit.
During the Cold War, the US intelligence agencies, such as the National Security Agency (NSA), were reportedly able to intercept Soviet microwave traffic using satellites such as Rhyolite.[4] Much of the beam of a microwave link passes the receiving antenna and radiates toward the horizon, into space. At the turn of the century, microwave radio relay systems are being used increasingly in portable radio applications.
A microwave link is a communications system that uses a beam of radio waves in the microwave frequency range to transmit video, audio, or data between two locations, which can be from just a few feet or meters to several miles or kilometers apart. Mobile units can be camera mounted, allowing cameras the freedom to move around without trailing cables.

Microwave power transmission (MPT) is the use of microwaves to transmit power through outer space or the atmosphere without the need for wires.
Following World War II, which saw the development of high-power microwave emitters known as cavity magnetrons, the idea of using microwaves to transmit power was researched. Using microwave power transmission to deliver electricity to communities without having to build cable-based infrastructure is being studied at Grand Bassin on Reunion Island in the Indian Ocean.
The common reaction to microwave transmission is one of concern, as microwaves are generally perceived by the public as dangerous forms of radiation - stemming from the fact that they are used inmicrowave ovens. Though this would be extremely safe as the power levels would be about equal to the leakage from a microwave oven, and only slightly more than a cell phone, the relatively diffuse microwave beam necessitates a large receiving antenna area for a significant amount of energy to be transmitted.
MPT is the most commonly proposed method for transferring energy to the surface of the Earth from solar power satellites or other in-orbit power sources. So just because there is a tower nearby doesn't mean it is for the company that handles your phone calls. Many cell towers have been bought out and now lease space for the cell equipment, sometimes for more than one company. CHICAGO (CBS) ? So-called rogue cell phone towers, the type that can intercept your mobile calls and data, are cropping up all over the United States, including here in Chicago, according to a company that specializes in developing highly secure mobile phones. More cell phone users, who fear their information could be at risk, are turning to high-end secure mobile devices. CBS 2 security analyst Ross Rice, a former FBI agent, said it?s likely being used illegally. Les Goldsmith, the CEO of ESD America, which makes secure cell phones, said law enforcement, with a warrant, can use interceptor devices if they need information in real time, or if they don?t want a cellular network to know what they are tracking. These devices don?t look like a tower, but are rather electronic boxes and laptops that trick a regular phone that it?s part of an actual cellular network. As a result, the company recently published a map showing 19 such eavesdropping devices across the country, including at least one in Chicago. The company?s top of the line GSMK Cryptophone, the CP500, has a firewall that constantly monitors all activity on the phone.
When a user gets an alert that a cell tower has no neighboring towers?legitimate towers from phone companies form a network?it indicates the ?cell tower? is potentially a danger to the user?s security. ESD can only rely on location information of the reported interceptors based on the user?s report. Les Goldsmith is the CEO of ESD, a defense and law enforcement technology firm based in Las Vegas. The interceptors can be as simple as a computer and a radio and, for years now, hackers have been demonstrating methods for putting one together for as little as $3000. Capitol, on the eve of a potential federal government shutdown, in WashingtonWASHINGTON (Reuters) - An agency of the U.S. Marshals Service began operations in 2007 and uses Cessna planes flying from at least five major airports and covering most of the U.S.
But not for the CryptoPhone 500,A  a customized Android device that is disguised as a Samsung Galaxy S IIIA but has highly advanced encryption. It’s very scary to think that there are at least 19 bogus cellphone towers, and probably more not yet discovered, working across the United States that could be spying on us. Goldsmith told Popular Science in an online piece recently that one of his customers took a road trip from Florida to North Carolina and he found eight different interceptors on that trip!
Cellphones communicate with cellular-service towers using baseband processors, a chip that controls radio signals sent to and from the tower.
Further research concluded that we use our cell phones more to obtain quick information, text messaging, picture taking, and to assist us during emergencies. Ever since an August report in Popular Science revealed the existence of a series of "Interceptor" cell towers across the US, there's been a scramble for information on exactly what these mysterious towers actually are.
It'sA marketed as a secure alternative to normal mobile phones with a cost upward of $3,500.
It's also possible to monitor and track the physical location of a mobile phone using a hacked cell tower, meaning that so-called "Interceptor" towers can be used to follow people as they travel in the area of the cell tower. According to Chinese security company Qihoo Security, there are over 13 million of these fake messages sent every single day in China.
This is a long-established practice in China, so it's possible that it also goes on in America. This isn't an outlandish theory, as American police forces are already known to use "Stingray" technology to track cellphones. Instead, theA company has released a handful of maps and given interviews to the press about them. This part of the radio spectrum ranges across frequencies of roughly 1.0 gigahertz (GHz) to 30 GHz.
This allows nearby microwave equipment to use the same frequencies without interfering with each other, as lower frequency radio waves do.
A disadvantage is that microwaves are limited to line of sight propagation; they cannot pass around hills or mountains as lower frequency radio waves can. Other parts of the microwave radio band are used for radars, radio navigation systems, sensor systems, and radio astronomy. Radio waves in this band are usually strongly attenuated by the Earthly atmosphere and particles contained in it, especially during wet weather.
In microwave radio relay, microwaves are transmitted between the two locations with directional antennas, forming a fixed radio connection between the two points. Much of the transcontinental traffic is now carried by cheaper optical fibers and communication satellites, but microwave relay remains important for shorter distances. Antennas used must be highly directional (High gain); these antennas are installed in elevated locations such as large radio towers in order to be able to transmit across long distances. Additionally, in order to form the line of sight connection between the two stations, the firstFresnel zone must be free from obstacles so the radio waves canpropagate across a nearly uninterrupted path. Rare events of temperature, humidity and pressure profile versus height, may produce large deviations and distortion of the propagation and affect transmission quality.
The link built in 1979 by Telettra allowed to proper transmit 300 telephone channels and 1 TV signal, in the 2 GHz frequency band. Signal clarity obtained by this method depends on the weather and other factors, and as a result a high level of technical difficulty is involved in the creation of a reliable over horizon radio relay link. Starting in the late 1940s, this continued to some degree into the 1960s, when many of these links were supplanted with tropospheric scatter or satellite systems.
By positioning a geosynchronous satellite in the path of the beam, the microwave beam can be received. The technology is particularly suited to this application because of lower operating costs, a more efficient infrastructure, and provision of direct hardware access to the portable radio operator.

Microwave links are commonly used by television broadcasters to transmit programmes across a country, for instance, or from an outside broadcast back to a studio. While these have lower efficiency levels they have the advantage of being electrically steered using no moving parts, and are easier to scale to the necessary levels that a practical MPT system requires. While high power microwaves can be painful and dangerous as in the United States Military's Active Denial System, MPT systems are generally proposed to have only low intensity at the rectenna.
MPT is occasionally proposed for the power supply in beam-powered propulsion for orbital lift space ships.
As a result, it is become easier for them to detect the presence of these interceptor devices. The phone looks like a typical Android phone, but the inside includes encryption algorithms developed by a German company, GSMK, that protects the phone from intercepts. In the case of the Chicago interceptor, the user simply reported it as near the airport, but didn?t specify whether it was Midway or O?Hare.
Goldsmith said they do a lot of business with governments, but are selling more privately, including about 200 units today alone. Using a Samsung Galaxy S4 and an iPhone as a control group, Goldsmith drove his CryptoPhone past an interceptor located near an undisclosed government facility in the Nevada desert. Justice Department is gathering data from thousands of cell phones, including both criminal suspects and innocent Americans, by using fake communications towers on airplanes, the Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday. One of our customers took a road trip from Florida to North Carolina and he found eight different interceptors on that trip. This is an issue Congress must address immediately before our data and privacy rights are stolen. There are suggestions that the cell towers are the work of criminal gangs, a surveillance tool by the FBI, or even that they belong to foreign spies.
ESD America's Facebook Page has turned into a media center for the cell towers, teasing upcoming reveals of more cell towers. Also, in wide band of frequencies around 60 GHz, the radio waves are strongly attenuated by molecular oxygen in the atmosphere.
To achieve narrow beamwidths, the reflector must be much larger than the wavelength of the radio waves. Typical types of antenna used in radio relay link installations areparabolic antennas, dielectric lens, and horn-reflector antennas, which have a diameter of up to 4 meters.
Obstacles in the signal field cause unwanted attenuation, and are as a result only acceptable in exceptional cases. High intensity rain and snow must also be considered as an impairment factor, especially at frequencies above 10 GHz.
Over horizon radio relay links are therefore only used where standard radio relay links are unsuitable (for example, in providing a microwave link to an island). The TDX was improved to the TD2, which still used klystron tubes in the transmitters, and then later to the TD3 that used solid state electronics. When the NATO military arm was formed, much of this existing equipment was transferred to communications groups.
Brown demonstrated a miniature helicopter equipped with a combination antenna and rectifier device called a rectenna. Even though lasers are more commonly proposed, their low efficiency in light generation and reception has led some designers to opt for microwave based systems. And lately, Goldsmith and his CryptoPhone customers have been noticing some pretty ominous, fake cell phone towers across America.
The devices work by communicating with a second, proprietary operating system common to all mobile phones and run off the baseband processor: the chip that handles a phone's radio functions. Both commercial phones not only didn't register the attack, but continued to communicate that they were on a 4G network. Placing a bogus cell phone call to avoid these pesky people ends up becoming magic, because they magically keep their mouths close when they see me on my cell phone.
The electronic technologies needed in the millimeter wave band are also much more difficult to utilize than those of the microwave band. The relatively short wavelength of microwaves allows reasonably sized dishes to exhibit the desired highly directional response for both receiving and transmitting.
Highly directive antennas permit an economical use of the available frequency spectrum, despite long transmission distances. High mountain peak or ridge positions are often ideal: Europe's highest radio relay station, the Richtfunkstation Jungfraujoch, is situated atop the Jungfraujoch ridge at an altitude of 3,705 meters (12,156 ft) above sea level.
The main motivation in 1946 to use microwave radio instead of cable was that a large capacity could be installed quickly and at less cost. The typical communications systems used by NATO during that time period consisted of the technologies which had been developed for use by the telephone carrier entities in host countries. The rectenna converted microwave power into electricity, allowing the helicopter to fly.[6] In principle, the rectenna is capable of very high conversion efficiencies - over 90% in optimal circumstances. We know (well, some of us) that it is rude to interrupt someone while they are on the phone. If, for example, Russia or China were to embark upon a campaign of mass surveillance against American citizens, they probably wouldn't use unsophisticated technology that can be discovered by a modified Samsung Galaxy SIII.
It was expected at that time that the annual operating costs for microwave radio would be greater than for cable. One example from the USA is the RCA CW-20A 1?2 GHz microwave relay system which utilized flexible UHF cable rather than the rigid waveguide required by higher frequency systems, making it ideal for tactical applications. For the rude people who just do not have much home training, or quite frankly do not care if you are on your cell phone; I have a remedy for that. There were two main reasons that a large capacity had to be introduced suddenly: Pent up demand for long distance telephone service, because of the hiatus during the war years, and the new medium of television, which needed more bandwidth than radio.
The typical microwave relay installation or portable van had two radio systems (plus backup) connecting two LOS sites. These radios would often provide communication for 24 telephone channels of frequency division multiplexed signal (i.e.
Then one can resume the fake conversation with silence on the other end, and go our your merry way. Lenkurt 33C FDM), though any channel could be designated to carry up to 18 teletype communications instead. How many of you have grabbed your cell phone just to hear the sweet sounds of silence, in order to silence someone you did not want to speak too?

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