August 20, 2019 by David Kavalerchik

With Radio Provisioning, Every Second Counts

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Industries: 9-1-1 & Law Enforcement Fire & EMS

Topics: APX Two-Way Radios & Accessories Cybersecurity Device Management Services

Radio ProvisioningEveryday, law enforcement agencies across the country tackle some of the toughest and most dangerous incidents, threatening public safety. Often these incidents require agency interoperability.

Imagine getting an urgent call from a neighboring county – they need backup as soon as possible but there is a problem. They are on an encrypted ASTRO network and there is no time to provision / enable service for your county’s radios.

What now? Ultimately, there are three options – you either cannot interoperate, degrade the security of the system so it’s un-encrypted (referred to as ‘operating in the clear’), or complete a lengthy provisioning process in order to securely interoperate. While operating in the clear might be acceptable in everyday first-responder communications, there are scenarios when it can sabotage an entire operation. It has been documented that adversaries will monitor communications in the clear to stay ahead of law enforcement.

The best practice is to communicate securely over encrypted channels. However, the provisioning process to achieve this takes around a day or more every time a radio moves from one Key Management Facility (KMF) to another. This is because a radio is only capable of receiving keys from one KMF at a time. So, what if the neighboring county needs backup now? 

Enter Multi-System Over-the-Air-Rekeying (MS-OTAR). After a one-time provisioning process, MS-OTAR allows users to seamlessly roam between systems without the headache of constant provisioning. With MS-OTAR, your team packs up the radios and heads over to the neighboring county, simply turning the radio channel knob from your home KMF to the neighboring county’s KMF. And 3.5 seconds later, everyone is operating over encrypted interop channels. 

Do not take risks using radios with unsecure connections. Multi-System Over-the-Air-Rekeying (MS-OTAR) from Motorola Solutions lowers the barrier to operate securely, enables users to use best practices and increases operational efficiency.

Learn more about you can save valuable seconds with MS-OTAR.

Contact us to find out more about our solutions and services.

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