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Is Feeding ADS-B Signals Legal.

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  • Is Feeding ADS-B Signals Legal.

    I live in New Zealand and our radiocommunications law says that it is illegal to pass on any radiocommunications if they aren't for you. Does this apply for ADS-B or not. You know I just want to be safe!

    133A Offence to disclose contents of radiocommunications

    (1) Every person commits an offence against this Act who receives a radiocommunication and who, knowing that the radiocommunication was not intended for that person,—
    (a)makes use of the radiocommunication or any information derived from that radiocommunication; or
    (b)reproduces or causes or permits to be reproduced the radiocommunication or information derived from that radiocommunication; or
    (c)discloses the existence of the radiocommunication.

    (2)Subsection (1) does not apply to any radiocommunications intercepted—
    (a)by the Secretary for the purpose of ensuring compliance with this Act; or
    (b)by a constable, a Customs officer, or any other class of law enforcement official listed in regulations made under this Act for the purpose of avoiding prejudice to the maintenance of the law, including the detection, prevention, investigation, prosecution, and punishment of offences; or
    (c)by an officer or employee of—
    (i)the New Zealand Security Intelligence Service, for the purpose of obtaining intelligence relevant to security; or
    (ii)the Government Communications Security Bureau, for the purpose of obtaining foreign intelligence; or
    (d)by a member of the New Zealand Defence Force, in connection with any of the purposes specified in section 5(a) to (d) of the Defence Act 1990; or
    (e)by a person acting under, and in accordance with, any authority conferred on him or her by or under—
    (i)Part 1 of the Telecommunications (Residual Provisions) Act 1987; or
    (ii)the New Zealand Security Intelligence Service Act 1969; or
    (iia)the Government Communications Security Bureau Act 2003; or
    (iii)the Misuse of Drugs Amendment Act 1978; or
    (iv)the International Terrorism (Emergency Powers) Act 1987.

    (3)For the purposes of this section,—
    (a)foreign intelligence has the same meaning as in section 4 of the Government Communications Security Bureau Act 2003:
    (b)security has the same meaning as in section 2(1) of the New Zealand Security Intelligence Service Act 1969.

  • #2
    The radio commincation law is similar in many countires. The text above is for example very similar in Sweden and most other European countires. As the letter B in ADS-B stands for Broadcast and the signal has no dedicated receiver there is no problem with distributing the signal.

    FR24 has been talking with Aviation Authorities and airports in both Australia and New Zealand and they never had any issues with our service.


    • #3
      podi413 - Rebroadcasting ATC phone calls and police etc here... now that's another story.
      Posts not to be taken as official support representation - Just a helpful uploader who tinkers


      • #4

        I've been discussing various aspects of my receiver and setup with Air Services Australia in Canberra (our capital city) since I first received it in 2008, actually long before I knew anything about FR24. Perhaps that was before FR24 existed, certainly in its current form, Mike could help more with that one. They are the authority responsible for the testing and implimentation of ADS-B technology here in Australia. Not only have they been more than happy to be of any assistance during this time but they have been extremely obliging and helpful with any questions I've had for them. If they ever had any concerns with my setup or what we are doing they've certainly never expresed them to me. As far as they are concerned, it's a public broadcast as Mike has indicated.
        There have been occasions they've given me far more information and help than I've even asked for such as the initial testing phase which took place up in Bundaberg, Queensland etc, so I'd consider that if it isnt an issue for them, it isnt an issue for us.

        As Oblivian has stated there are some limitations. Here in Australia we are allowed to re-broadcast ATC communications to sites such as liveatc (although I dont) but in many countries you cant. We can also listen to live ATC comms with a scanner but you cant even do that in many countries, so Mike is quite right in keeping an open dialogue with aviation authorities around the world with regard to ADS-B and FR24. It also isnt a case of open slather here just because we can listen to ATC. I recently posted an incident on the forum about a diversion of VOZ313 into Sydney with 3 passengers in various states of consciousness. I picked it up on their company frequency before seeing it on the map but also picked up far more information regarding the private details of the passengers than what was posted (including seat numbers, names of passengers and in one case a pre-existing medical condition). Those details werent and will never be posted here or on the chat. Sometimes it's a matter of common sense (and common decency as well as privacy considerations) and common sense has to prevail irrespective of the law if we want to remain on the right side of authorities and continue our hobby.
        As far as New Zealand (or many countries for that matter) is concerned, until advised to the contrary ADS-B reception and re-broadcasting is making use of publicly available information and data and is therefore fine. Nothing in the law in your post above would indicate that the 'radiocommunications' in any way relates to ADS-B in any case, let alone could it be construed that 'it's not intended for that person' (the public).
        When you think about it, the information on every aspect of this hobby is making use of this publicly available information and data, down to the identification of almost every aircraft including what engines it is fitted with and its history. I dont think we have anything to worry about, at least at this point in time if we continue to do the right thing.


        Birdie, I wouldnt have believed it possible to sum it up in a dozen or so words if I hadnt seen it. Well said, you'd make a good aussie with that attitude- give it a go until somebody taps you on the shoulder and says stop.
        Last edited by fungus; 2013-06-05, 04:31. Reason: update
        YSSY2/T-YSSY4 [SBS-1 Basestation w/- SSE-1090 SJ Mk2 Antenna (Thanks Delcomp) ] [Uniden UBCD996T w/- 16 element Wideband Discone VHF/UHF Antenna, and tuned 108MHz-137MHz Airband Antenna] [Trialing a home-brew 1090MHz collinear antenna]


        • #5
          Originally posted by podi413 View Post
          I live in New Zealand and our radio communications law says that it is illegal to pass on any radio communications if they aren't for you. Does this apply for ADS-B or not. You know I just want to be safe!
          When not sure or in grey area - practice the basic rule: Don't ask - just do it.

          Civil servants, by their nature - will simply say: NO. So they don't have to work or quoted.
          F-WSSS1 - Cats refused to Pee & Pooh on RadarBox - Running a FR24 Receiver & DVB-T Dongle 24/7 to piss off The Chief Thief.