D.C. Fire Department May Be Encrypting Radios

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WASHINGTON — The District of Columbia fire department is considering encrypting its radios in the wake of the mass shooting at the Washington Navy Yard.

Deputy Mayor for Public Safety Paul Quander said Wednesday that a final decision hasn’t been made. But he says encrypting radios will be among the “strong recommendations” from a review of the department’s response to the shooting in September, which left 12 people dead.

D.C. police radio communications are encrypted, but the fire department scanner is available to the public and can be used to follow firefighters and paramedics in real time. Quander says he’s concerned the information could be used for harm.

Firefighters’ union president Ed Smith says the live broadcasts are “a benefit to the public.”

(© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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