You Can Never Really Tell Who Gets Your Wireless Transmissions

It was interesting to read about an elementary school science teacher in a Chicago suburb whose baby monitor picks up the video transmission from inside the space shuttle Atlantis.

NASA indicates it is not coming from the shuttle itself, but they do say the shuttle transmission is broadcast on their site, so it is not anything secret.
The funny thing is the teacher took the monitor into school to show her students on the last day of class and continued to receive the transmission there also. So, it doesn’t appear as though it was being picked up through a wireless Internet AP in her neighborhood. Hmm…so where is she picking it up from?
A somewhat similar situation happened in my home recently. We don’t watch that much television so we just use an antenna to bring in the 7 channels we can pick up via the airwaves. I allow my sons to watch PBS, and a couple of mornings right after their last day of school they were watching Arthur, but the sound was not that for the show; it was the communications going over a police scanner. Noah and Heath were fascinated; they learned the police had been dispatched to a school to handle an out of control food fight. I’m not sure which of the towns the scanner transmissions were from, but it was likely one of the small ones within 10 miles of us. They also listened in on a domestic disturbance call and a stray dog in the neighborhood. Oh, and the police took a quick break at Casey’s (a convenience store popular in the midwest).
I’m tempted to go up on the roof and reposition the antenna…who knows what else I might pick up!
Regarding the baby monitor incident,

“Summer Infant, the monitor’s manufacturer, is investigating what could be causing the transmission, communications director Cindy Barlow said. She said she’s never heard of anything similar happening.”Not even close,” she said. “Gotta love technology.””

Indeed; gotta love technology!
There will always be unknown factors for which even the technology experts are unaware. You can never really know what type of data and information is leaking through wireless transmissions.

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