This Article is About
police scanners
boston bombings
hand held scanners
police scanner
social networks
Are Police Scanners Illegal
Join 1000's of Authors at StreetArticles Today!

Are Police Scanners Illegal

Are police scanners legal for me to use and listen to

Many first time scanner enthusiasts are often worried that listening to a police scanner may be illegal to operate. Some states do prohibit the use of a scanner in a motor vehicle at this time, but it is not illegal to listen to police and fire as long as you are not doing so to engage in criminal activity or to relay information that you hear. it is not legal to listen to encrypted messages as well.

Scanner enthusiasts have enjoyed listening to them for many years, with laws in effect that date back to 1944 when Los Angeles county passed an anti scanner law that prohibited the use of a scanner. The law has since then been amended, most recently in 1983.

When the Boston bombings were happening the live scanner feeds that came up online were staggering. Many people were sharing the information that they heard live and streaming it over the internet. As people started tweeting and sharing information through social networks the media was caught up in the frenzy and started passing on what they heard as well, oftentimes misinforming their audience. It added to the chaos as different agencies hunted for the attackers. Streaming a live scanner feed over the internet is a gray area at this time, although it would seem to fall under the category of sharing information heard.

If you plan on traveling be sure to check local and state laws for the states that you will be going through along the way to keep yourself out of trouble as well. Although most states do not prohibit the use of mobile scanners some counties still do. If you are stopped you may find yourself in trouble. This also includes hand held scanners while in your vehicle.

Although you can listen in on your local police and fire departments online, it is much more rewarding to hear it on your own personal scanner. Now with the new technology that is available most modern scanners are PC programmable as well, making it easier than ever to program in all your favorite local frequencies. Some modern scanners come with a programmed frequency database, so all you have to do is enter your zip code and you can start listening right away without having to program everything in by hand or computer.

So at this point in time it is still legal for you to listen in on your local and state police departments as well as any fire and rescue communications. You can carry a hand held scanner with you to keep up to date on current events. Any communications that are happening that are NOT encrypted are free to listen to as long as you are not passing that information along and obstructing justice.

Scanners can be a very rewarding hobby and keep you and your family safe with the latest weather updates and police activity. Using and listening to a police scanner does not make you a criminal.


Street Talk

No comments present
You May Also Like
Police Scanners: Why Every Home Should Have One
Why you need a police scanner In a world filled with lawyers and corrupt politicians, it is more important than ever to stop relying on our government and emergency services to protect us and start taking responsibility for ourselves. This includes knowing what is happening in a crisis and making…
By:  in  Communications  >  Radio   Sep 06, 2014  
0
  Likes: 6

Working With Unhealthy Jealousy - What Couples Must Know
Slightly jealousy gives a partnership some spice, but as well substantially jealousy is usually damaging in any passionate romance. Jealousy happens every time a husband or wife feels threatened by a third particular person whom they thinks can be a rival plus a menace for their romance. Jealousy can both…
By: moschinoonline in  Communications  >  Radio   Jun 02, 2016  
0
  Likes: 0

Assemble Your Own Wind Power Generator
Wind power turbine is what each one of those individuals who are occupied with this type of option vitality need when they need to do the switch. Furthermore, fortunately, there are numerous such turbines that are accessible in the business sector. Numerous individuals are however not amped up for one…
By: Zeeshan Ahmad in  Communications  >  Radio   Feb 17, 2016  
0
  Likes: 0

CB Radios
CB Radios provide citizens with a system of short distance radio communications on a selection of 40 channels, all ran on a 27MHz band. The "CB" in CB radios actually stands for citizens' band radio. CB radios were made popular during the 1970's. This allowed normal citizens to use a…
By: Branden in  Communications  >  Radio   Apr 22, 2011  
0
  Likes: 1

Internet Radio Atlanta- Have You Heard Of It?
When it comes to Atlanta internet radio, it is plain obvious that it is worldwide only because it is on the internet. I do not care what anyone says, internet radio is becoming more popular than traditional local radio stations just because it holds more volume to a particular audiance…
By: Saytue Saye1 in  Communications  >  Radio   Jul 19, 2011  
1
  Likes: 0

Why Did it Take so Long for CB Radio to Be Legalize In the Uk
CB radio was first reporting on our shores in the early 1970,s with illegal 27 MHz AM modulation sets being imported from America. It popularity increased steadily through the 70,s and into the 80,s even though the use of the actual equipment was against the law and punishable by fines…
By: Rizzer in  Communications  >  Radio   Dec 27, 2012  
0
  Likes: 0

Why I Love Ham Radio But Hate the Direction it is Going
Ham radio is a fun and rewarding hobby that can provide years of service and learning. Unfortunately we have gotten to a place where ham radio is regarded as and old mans hobby. We do have a younger generation of people coming into the hobby, but we have dumbed down…
By:  in  Communications  >  Radio   May 19, 2014  
0
  Likes: 3

Recycling That Old Antenna
Using the Antron-99 vertical base station antenna for a police scanner. One day as your are playing on your ham radio gear you get to thinking of when you first started using radio back during the CB craze of the 70's and 80's. With the current solar conditions and the…
By:  in  Communications  >  Radio   Nov 16, 2012  
0
  Likes: 2

Internet Radio Hosting Using Blogtalkradio Premium
I don't care if this is your first time getting started or is a pro at radio producing; BlogTalkRadio Premium offers a wide range of internet radio hosting packages that make sharing your opioion and increasing your brand apperance easy. All you need is a phone and a computer. I…
By: Saytue EOTM Youngest Saye in  Communications  >  Radio   Feb 23, 2011  
0
  Likes: 1

How Can Investing In Portable Two Way Radios Ensure Safe Work Environment
Security is one of the biggest concerns for any government in power. The government has invested in varying technologies, top among them being portable two way radios. These are radios that enable two people to communicate effectively as it sends information instantly. Organizations also need to invest in this equipment…
By: Pankaj Sharma in  Communications  >  Radio   Dec 04, 2014  
4
  Likes: 6

Who Killed Local Radio?
I remember as a little kid visiting my cousins in New York City with my parents. When we started to get close, NewYork AM radio stations started overriding the local stations we started our ninety-mile trip with. Eventually I'd hear the WABC jingle. It sent a tingle down my spine.…
By: Peter Goodman in  Communications  >  Radio   Aug 11, 2012  
0
  Likes: 0

Near Field Communication - The New Way to Pay
I want to talk about the technology that's been making waves in the mobile industry recently. It's called Near Field Communication. It's basically a technology in smartphones and similar devices that allows for communication between devices through tapping or bringing into close proximity with each other. Now one of the…
By: Jan Osbert in  Communications  >  Radio   Feb 07, 2012  
7
  Likes: 4

When the Lights Go Out
What you need when the lights go out. You know the scenario. Here you are, happily typing away writing another useless article, the wife's computer making all sorts of racket as she plays away at her favorite games. The kids are laughing and watching their favorite Disney movie, when suddenly…
By:  in  Communications  >  Radio   Jun 03, 2015  
4
  Likes: 10

Solar Panels for Home Use
Why solar panel for home use will not work for me. Living in the Pacific Northwest I've been looking around at all the different options that are available for emergency power use during a storm or extended blackout solar power for home use is constantly popping up. Although this is…
By:  in  Communications  >  Radio   Jul 17, 2014  
0
  Likes: 2

Is the Commercial Break Broken?
I am going to tell you about fifteen different products, places to go or contests to enter one after the other. When I'm finished I'd like you to recount each of them with their message and contact information. And no, you are not being given a roadside sobriety test. Now,…
By: Peter Goodman in  Communications  >  Radio   Aug 15, 2012  
0
  Likes: 0

Article Views: 2355    Report this Article