Getting Ready For The MONEX

There are a few things you need to be aware of before engaging in this MONEX, especially if you’ll be in the field… is the source for frequency data you’ll need for this project. Start by doing a one-mile Site/Market/Frequency Search with the shopping center/mall of interest, or do a five-mile radius from your monitoring location. If you are interested in business/industrial users, DMR and NXDN reception capability is strongly recommended. For Public Safety, P25 is essential, especially Phase 2 if you have a public safety trunked system you want to monitor.

Doing a little monitoring before the MONEX is acceptable, especially if you need to research what’s active frequency-wise in your area. You can then park a receiver on the local mall security frequency you’ve determined beforehand and dedicate the MONEX to hearing first-hand your fellow consumers engaging in Peace on earth and good will towards men as they all try at once to get the last gaming system in the store.

If you sit in your car for more than say 20-30 minutes in any patrolled parking lot, a security officer will likely check on you to see what you’re doing, and if you’re OK. That’s what they do. If they find you sitting there doing SIGINT, they’ll possibly ask you to leave. Setting up shop in the mall with your scanner visible will result in security asking you to leave. It’s private property and their prerogative. If you’re going to sit in a parking lot and play Russian trawler with a shopping mall, have a van that you can sit in the back and operate from. If they don’t see someone loitering in the vehicle, they’ll automatically assume you’re inside shopping with all the other consumers.

Park and Rides are better in that they are public parking spaces, and it’s pretty common to see people parked in them eating lunch or whatever. That still doesn’t exempt you from getting approached by a cop who may ask you what you’re doing. “Playing with my radio gear” is a perfectly acceptable and legal answer, and the worst the cop will do is ask you to move along, at which time you’ll keep your ego in your pants and find another place to operate from. If it were me in the field, I’d set up an urban hide somewhere out of sight and mind where I would not be noticed and questioned. Best place in a city is a hotel room as high up as you can go. Most shopping malls with a repeater can be heard a good three miles away, and the portables (MURS) inside stores are generally good for a half-mile outside the building.

This is a SIGINT exercise. You are there to collect data and leave without detection or incident. Leave the first amendment audit and sovereign citizen bullshit at home. If you have a problem with this, then don’t participate. When you are done, if you did the thing properly you will have the beginnings of a nice Electronic Order of Battle notebook for your area. This is for your eyes only, as the information is guaranteed to become obsolete as soon as you post it up to Radio Reference or some other scanner dweeb site.

The MONEX may be on the 25th, and for a day, but you have 19 days to get ready for it, whatever you decide to do. The Library has a lot of good information that will help you out. Take advantage of it.

Author: Ticom

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