FCC OKs High-Tech Radio System to Improve Security of Transmissions

Associated Press

The Federal Communications Commission on Thursday approved the use of a new high-tech radio system to make it more difficult for unauthorized persons to scan radio transmissions.

The technology, called “spread spectrum,” was authorized for public-safety, industrial, scientific and medical-services users on a limited basis.

With it, a low-power radio transmission is combined with a wide noise-like signal that can be heard only by a special radio. The system, originally developed for military use, should be “very helpful in undercover police work,” FCC scientist Joseph McNulty told the commissioners before they approved the proposal.