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Proceedings Paper

Wireless networks of opportunity in support of secure field operations
Author(s): Roy H. Stehle; Mark Lewis
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Paper Abstract

Under funding from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) for joint military and law enforcement technologies, demonstrations of secure information transfer in support of law enforcement and military operations other than war, using wireless and wired technology, were held in September 1996 at several locations in the United States. In this paper, the network architecture, protocols, and equipment supporting the demonstration's scenarios are presented, together with initial results, including lessons learned and desired system enhancements. Wireless networks of opportunity encompassed in-building (wireless-LAN), campus-wide (Metricom Inc.), metropolitan (AMPS cellular, CDPD), and national (one- and two-way satellite) systems. Evolving DARPA-sponsored packet radio technology was incorporated. All data was encrypted, using multilevel information system security initiative (MISSI)FORTEZZA technology, for carriage over unsecured and unclassified commercial networks. The identification and authentication process inherent in the security system permitted logging for database accesses and provided an audit trail useful in evidence gathering. Wireless and wireline communications support, to and between modeled crisis management centers, was demonstrated. Mechanisms for the guarded transport of data through the secret-high military tactical Internet were included, to support joint law enforcement and crisis management missions. A secure World Wide Web (WWW) browser forms the primary, user-friendly interface for information retrieval and submission. The WWW pages were structured to be sensitive to the bandwidth, error rate, and cost of the communications medium in use (e.g., the use of and resolution for graphical data). Both still and motion compressed video were demonstrated, along with secure voice transmission from laptop computers in the field. Issues of network bandwidth, airtime costs, and deployment status are discussed.

Paper Details

Date Published: 18 February 1997
PDF: 17 pages
Proc. SPIE 2938, Command, Control, Communications, and Intelligence Systems for Law Enforcement, (18 February 1997); doi: 10.1117/12.266743
Show Author Affiliations
Roy H. Stehle, SRI International (United States)
Mark Lewis, SRI International (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 2938:
Command, Control, Communications, and Intelligence Systems for Law Enforcement
Edward M. Carapezza; Donald Spector, Editor(s)

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