So they say.

Or maybe not so much, should Russia get serious about Elecronic Warfare in Donbass and shut down the carrier network the phones rely on. They’re only still online because the phones themselves provide a wealth of intelligence value, in case you were wondering. Sure, with the interfacing of the less-common and expensive Motorola iDEN a parallel net can be set up, but still, it’s equipment that’s not common on the street. All that said, the app seems like a decent enough privacy option for those of you networking via Android and an alternative to privacy-focused apps such as Signal. The ability to send overlays is nice, and provides a peer-to-peer ability akin to the Blue Force Tracker. But if you’re on iPhone, you’re out of luck; one more reason to move to an open-source network.

All this is setting aside the elephant in the room; the fact that signals training at the small unit level is next to non-existent. A lot of the problems the ground units are experiencing, especially interception of SALT/SALUTE Reports and the counter-battery fire via Radio Direction Finding (RDF or DF for short) can be greatly mitigated first by the simple construction and use of directional antennas and second limiting the necessary electronic footprint. Image result for military moxon antennaIn addition, thinking a bit outside of the box, such as how to transmit digitally over those inexpensive analog handheld radios and a simple TNC interface, can be a far more secure option with minimal investment. But that requires a higher degree of training, time and intelligent volunteers.

The need for specialized communications training is one that is critical to any preparedness-oriented group and highly likely to be the first to get your patrol compromised if not taken seriously. Ask the Ukrainians in Donbass, they’re telling you. And my very well educated guess is that no cell phone app is gonna help them in the near future. But solid skills just might help you.

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