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Re: Fwd: [coldwarcomms] NSA LADNER system

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  • ozob99@yahoo.com
    ... and data ... were ... and both ... links in areas ... diplomatic ... protected by ... of ... and ... specific ... management ... miles ... was ... coax ...
    Message 1 of 3 , Apr 5, 2001
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      --- In coldwarcomms@y..., Dave Emery <die@d...> wrote:
      > On Wed, Aug 09, 2000 at 03:34:09PM -0400, Mark Foster wrote:
      > >
      > > >A web search on LADNER turned up the following document:
      > > >
      > > >http://www.acm.org/reports/acm_crypto_study/chap4.html
      > > >
      > > >The relevant text is:
      > > >
      > > >"The first attempts to improve overall security in American voice
      and data
      > > >communications were undertaken in the 1970s. Encryption devices
      were
      > > >developed for protecting telephone switching information [Myer]
      and both
      > > >analog [Ladn] and digital [Link] telephone trunks. Microwave
      links in areas
      > > >such as Washington, New York, and San Francisco (where Soviet
      diplomatic
      > > >facilities had easy access to U.S. communications) were either
      protected by
      > > >encryption or replaced by underground cables."
      > >
      > > Interesting that underground cables were considered to be a form
      of
      > > transmission security.
      >
      > Most definately. Back in that era a great deal of effort was
      > put into routing and switching traffic such that sensitive circuits
      and
      > calls went on the coax routes through areas with significant risk of
      > USSR and other foreign microwave intercept operations. It was even
      > possible to request reports showing the percentages of calls to
      specific
      > places that went via various kinds of routes so as to provide a
      management
      > mechanism and leverage on the circuit routing folks.
      >
      > I think you may miss the truth about the old analog microwave
      > links, namely that traffic was easily interceptable for literally
      miles
      > around the sites with simple and completely passive equipment that
      was
      > essentially undetectable. Compared to that accessing a buried
      coax
      > with cable pressure alarms, vault entry alarms, pilot level alarms,
      > cable current alarms, high voltage on the the cable and so forth was
      > much harder and ran a much greater risk of detection. And the old
      > routes were regularly patrolled from the air and ground to look for
      > suspicious and potentially harmful activities.
      >
      > And because of the ease of microwave interception, in many
      > places it could be carried out from the rooftops of diplomatic real
      estate
      > (embassies, consulates, residences) where large facilities could be
      set
      > up under diplomatic immunity that could process stuff in real time
      and
      > forward it on to interested capitals. Taping a cable requires some
      > means to record and ship the intercept back to somewhere where it
      can
      > be processed, and simply renting a T1 is likely to be seen as too
      > suspicious (:
      >
      > As for LADNER, a source within MCI told me that in the mid
      80's
      > NSA came around and had them install large blue boxes in series with
      the
      > baseband of certain of their microwave links in certain areas, and
      that
      > these boxes were a wideband variety of rolling code analog voice
      > scramblers. Apparently they didn't especially like basebands with
      > circuits with excessive level ("hot") and caused such grief that MCI
      ran
      > many of its links which were supposed to have the LADNER or whatever
      (he
      > used a different codeword) boxes in circuit with them turned off or
      > otherwise patched out.
      >
      > And I am also aware that the NSA in the 80s, acting through
      the
      > FCC as intermediary I believe, pressured the Telcos in the NE in
      areas
      > around NYC and the Washington area to reduce the use of microwave
      links
      > and substitute underground cable and the rapidly blooming network of
      > optical fiber. It has been my understanding that an order requiring
      this
      > was issued...
      >
      >
      >
      > --
      > Dave Emery N1PRE, die@d... DIE Consulting, Weston, Mass.
      > PGP fingerprint = 2047/4D7B08D1 DE 6E E1 CC 1F 1D 96 E2 5D 27 BD B0
      24 88 C3 18



      There were massive reroutes of sensitive circuits from MW to cable &
      coax carrier at this time,known as the "Y" project within at&t.
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