back to article Wireless signals to be jammed in Canada for G8 summit

Government officials in Canada may temporarily block wireless signals as part of an effort to secure world leaders during the G8 and G20 summit scheduled in Ontario later this month. Wireless companies told the CBC they've been warned their signals may be blocked and no advanced warning will be given. The jamming is expected …


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  1. Dave 52

    Maybe they spent all the money on these jammers?

    For those who don't know, our government is spending over $1 billion dollars on these 2 summits, more then they spent on the Olympics in Vancouver that lasted 2 weeks, while this summit is only lasting 2 days. And they are resisting being audited. I'm not surprised they are afraid someone would try to blow them up.

  2. 46Bit

    Simple workaround

    Back to cup-and-string comms the terrorists go...

  3. Eddy Ito

    Oh, Ok.

    At least they aren't overreacting... or is that over-preempting. Then again, wouldn't it be easier to just ask everybody turn off their phone as they enter the conference?

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Halo

    All they need...

    ...are a few hundred bloggers running MiFi and hosting ad hoc access points.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Black Helicopters

    Send Money to Canada

    No wireless in Canada's largest city and the country's financial centre, possibly for the duration of this elitist jerkfest- yah that's a great idea.

    And hard on the heels of the $5.5 Million CND temporary fence too. No really, it's true, read the link. Total security costs alone for this event are estimated by the Gov to be over $1 billion CND!

    These costs will come from general tax revenue paid by folks that have absolutely no interest or reason to care for this 'event'. Any non-Canuck readers care to send some cheques to me to cover my tax portion? Share the love!

    I'd ask you all to share the hate but it would get me arrested, afterall this is 21st century Canada.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    They travel about.

    From place to place getting security measures put in at great cost to the taxpayers. when they leave are all the "security measures" taken out? I doubt it.

    How about a conference call. that would only cost a few bucks instead of wasting billions.

  7. Winkypop Silver badge

    Not the only thing being jammed

    Sorry Joe Public, YOU don't count.

    Why oh why don't they hold these pointless (an expensive) summits somewhere remote, like a resort island in the Pacific Ocean?

    - Control the whole islands, no make that countries, wireless network.

    - Minimal (violent) protests

    - Cheaper to run, all things considered

    - No disruption to a major city.

    - Cocktails...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Because (@Winkypop)

      They then couldn't demonstrate to us all who's really in charge of this planet. And that includes politicians who - whatever they claim - only attend these affairs to be told in private by the money men how high they'll be permitted to jump.

      When that gathering was held in Scotland a few years ago, the cost to the taxpayer in both money and inconvenience was shocking. To say nothing of civil rights being summarily overridden, and the illegal presence of armed units of a foreign power. The conference could as easily (and far more cheaply) have been held on a secure offshore island (plenty of those) or even on the aircraft carrier that Bush arrived on.

      But that would have been missing at least part of the point of the exercise. Giving the finger to local populations isn't a side issue - it's part of the package.

  8. Anonymous Coward


    Use Police Frequencies to detonate stuff. Here Police uses 87 MHz, which has much better propagation properties than mobile phones have.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      If I may be permitted a spaced quote:

      Oh, ah had-na fort ov dat.

  9. Fluffykins Silver badge

    "no advanced warning "

    Can I assume there will be a basic warning, then?

    Or did you mean no advance warning?

  10. Jason Bloomberg Silver badge

    So ....

    Instead of bombs looking for a signal to detonate, they simply wait for loss of signal and, after a short time, >kaboom<, as usual.

  11. Anonymous Coward


    So, how hard is it to design some kind of device which explodes when it STOPS hearing signals from its owner? Thanks to a little script, my laptop locks its screen when it stops being able to talk to my phone, so I'm guessing not very hard. I suppose the assumption is that terrorists are just very stupid.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      So what ?

      That will explode the bomb way ahead of the motorcade (as the jammers will be quite powerful) and tip off security.

      I would rather go for a broadband SDR which is jam-resistant.

    2. Eddy Ito


      But the terrorists are very stupid - at least as stupid as most governments in the grandiose, over complicated, making a statement, Dr. Evil kind of way. The whole thing really has been bad theater since the WTC attacks. Let's face it if they really wanted to instill terror the easiest way is to pick the targets where people feel safe, like the Wally World down the street. The problem with that is they won't get the press coverage they want so they have to look for "high value" targets that are protected by gubbermint song and dance.

  12. Johnny Canuck


    I live about 20 minutes walk from where the G20 will be held. My company has rented copiers and fax machines and printers to the government for the event. Funnily enough they won't let us in to repair them if they break down. The RCMP will be removing and destroying the hard drives from the copiers afterwards.

    1. Anonymous Coward

      Most Important Questions Are

      ...will they arrive on horses for the destruction job ? after all, they are supposed to be "mounted".

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Bubble of Silence? Do you know what radio jamming is?

    I'm assuming that are proposing this will occur over the entire Gx location areas, not just in front of the cars as they come in, cos that would be pretty pointless.

    They will have to leave certain frequencies open for the local security teams to use.

    Plus, it's not going to be an "Electronic bubble of silence". It completley is not that not on any level, I can't think of a more misleading and incorrect description if I tried. "Electronic bubble of silence" is marketing bullshit and I'm supprised the author fell for it.

    It's going to be a huge area of "deafening" RF noise the like of which has never been let loose in a city. And it's going to have to be pretty broad spectrum.

    I smell mis-information.

  14. M Gale


    ...what happens when the bomb acts on the signal like a dead man's handle?

    Motorcade gets near. Signal is jammed. Bomb goes off.

    I really rather hope they've thought about this. I think the last thing anyone needs is another Osama Bin Handle plus associated war.

  15. Paolo Marini

    popularity vs elected

    if instead of spending so much time and effort in trying to be re-elected (or simply elected) with false promises, these politicians would actually do some sensible and start keeping their campaign promises and taking popular decisions (as in appreciated by the majority of the people), then maybe, just maybe, they wouldn't have to worry about being so unpopular for these meetings and the population could enjoy their life better, without worrying from themselves too, because bombs and the likes (if any should be present) rarely only kill the intended target but cause many "innocent" casualties

  16. Cameron Colley

    How about moving the conference?

    Rather than blocking the wireless communication of the people they serve why don't governments simply hold conferences in places with no mobile phone of WiFi signals? I'm sure there's enough room in Canada and the US (though you could struggle in the UK) to simply hold these things with a ten-mile exclusion radius or something?

    It's about time these wankers stopped disrupting the lives of the people they are paid to serve.

  17. YumDogfood

    Security theatricals

    You mean silence live net' streaming (screaming?) of coppers lamping the hell outta the protesters?

    As for the 'make it go bang boys', a simple radio based dead mans switch should detect when the cavalcade of crap is passing by...

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    bubble of silence?

    no, the use of jamming would be more like making a bubble of cacophonous din (-10)

  19. Anonymous Coward


    Why are they doing this we never did any of that when the G20 was in the UK last year. I only know that as I worked at it and could still make calls no bother during it, and in the venue.

  20. David Pollard

    Also needs the UK's approach to photographers

    Given that the IRA used photoflash repeaters - presumably because they are cheap, easily available and fairly reliable - maybe the RCMP will have been liaising with their UK counterparts to develop expertise in apprehending tall photographers.

  21. chivo243 Silver badge


    Noooooo Max, not the cone of silence!

  22. MinionZero
    Thumb Down

    The theatrical peacocks grand entrance...

    If they were really worried about money, they would just use video conferencing instead of wasting time and money with this big show. After all, they must have the best video conferencing technology, so there is no practical reason why they can't use secure HD video streams, to do very good video conferencing. So they show through their actions, they want to bring a city to a halt with their grand entrance, just so they can play at being seen as important and then they can go on to have their decadent meetings with their minions all around them, all falling over each other desperate to keep their masters happy. Its a pattern of peacock grand entrance behaviour that has been repeated throughout history.

    Its a pattern of behaviour that combines a need to feel in power with a need for attention. The power seekers are the Narcissists and the attention seekers are Histrionic people, so what we have at the top is people who show they combine a need for power with a need for attention. So its no wonder they fight to the top in power, to then be seen as the all important person at the top. A Narcissistic Histrionic is a particularly nasty combination, because they will bring others down so they can maintain their need to be seen as important. Exactly the pattern of behaviour we see in politics and throughout history. Its why this pattern of peacock grand entrance behaviour has been repeated throughout recorded human history, because the same patterns of human behaviour have existed throughout history.

    Its also why I couldn't care less about their grand entrance, (I have little interest in these false two faced peacocks) as long as they don't cut off services I need to use, whilst they play at being important in front of their sheeple. After all, like others have pointed out, there is no logical reason why if attackers wanted to attack they would simply use unblocked radio frequencies, so all this blocking of some frequencies is meaningless, other than all being part of the theatrical peacocks grand entrance.

  23. Field Marshal Von Krakenfart
    Big Brother


    More like they want to block the communications of potential protesters. Sounds like the proles can only have freedom of speech and democracy if you agree with the ruling classes.


  24. Anonymous Coward


    ... but I have a force of elite and highly trained carrier pigeons who will be released as the motorcade approachers and as the vehicles pass, will peck on the detonator switch. KABOOM!!!

    Let's see them jam that...

    1. frank ly

      Let's Escalate....

      My flock of trained hawks will rip your pigeons to shreds if they come into the city.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Another Alternative

        ...surely the merkins would drop a few dozen tons of poisoned corn to kill the evil pigeons from the DC3 aircraft that otherwise drop chemicals into the Gulf (to dissolve the oil spill).

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Big Brother

    non state sponsored High Tech terrorism targeting the Elite

    when did one of those happen since the German Red Army (70's)?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      IRA ??

      use google to get more about it.

      1. Jimbo 6


        The IRA never, ever, EVER used radio-controlled explosive devices (because of the possibility of interference): always timers, or cables.

        Which made the SAS claim that they pumped scores of bullets into the Gibraltar 3 in cold blood because "we suspected they had a radio-control detonator in their pocket" just an obvious bit of BS to justify extra-judicial assassinations to the News-At-Ten public. Plus ca change...

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Excuse me but what do you actually mean by "wireless"?

    If you're old enough then wireless is just another word for a radio receiver. To others it means 802.11a,b,g or n. To some it might mean any form of wireless networking.

    Can you please be specific rather than using such an ambiguous term?

    1. Andus McCoatover

      Nah. I'm old enough.

      They're gonna block LW/MW/FM. On the Light/Third/Home services. (R2/R3/R4, for the kids out there). R1 was still basically on a boat called "Caroline". Wish it'd sunk and taken Tony Blackburn with it, but no such luck.

      After all, everyone's got a DAB receiver nowadays. Oh, and probably a CB (Children's Band) Wireless Set somewhere in the shed.

  27. Andus McCoatover

    Got it, Terrorists!!!

    You're sorted! Numberplate recognition will do it for you. i.e., if a car is spotted on CCTV (Britain's got loads, and they're incredibly secure. Like a sieve. Upload your malware while the bored operators surf porn...) without a number plate, it's the Queen! KABOOM!

    Obama's car's probably "US1". Ditto.

    However, there might be a few false positives with a car plate containing the letters "UBL". Or some Arabic script...

  28. TimeMaster T

    Terrorist or Martyr?

    A terrorist who wants to live to see the carnage will be inconvenienced by this, they will need an alternate method to trigger their device.

    A Martyr will just flip the switch as the target enters optimal range.

    They should just hold these conferences on Midway Island, it is secure, isolated, and a great place to get a tan. Of course Hookers and drugs would have to be brought in for the delegates, just in case they didn't bring their own.

  29. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Halo

    I know - I know

    Just do what they did in transformers.... instead of using mobile phones to communicate... use an old morse code transmitter and a spark gap generator.

    If it was good enough for Marconi and the Titanic - it's good enough for me.

    ... ..-- -.-. -.- -- -.-- -.-. --- -.-. -.-

    Just a thought.

    1. Andus McCoatover

      About: ... ..-- -.-. -.- -- -.-- -.-. --- -.-. -.-

      Yeah, nice. Even on a Friday night no-one's going to taste my "male chicken".

      (PS, the letter "U" is ..-, not ..- - Apart from the spacing, close, but no cigar.).

      (Self) Bloody (radio) amateurs.

    2. M Gale

      Re: I know - I know

      "... ..-- -.-. -.- -- -.-- -.-. --- -.-. -.-"

      No thanks. I don't know where it's been.

      And you missed a U. And all the whitespace. Use a / for that, don't you know?

      1. Andus McCoatover

        Yep, damn cut'n'pase.

        Couldn't be arsed to use / for letters separation, and // for word separation. Nor .-.-.- to terminate the phrase ;-).

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