Egypt maintains an extensive HF diplomatic network. It utilizes the following two digital modes, both broadcast in USB:
- SITOR-A, centered at +1700 Hz (the startup mode)
- A commercial off-the-shelf Codan 9001/3012 modem
When a SITOR-A link cannot be established, SITOR-B (also centered at +1700Hz) may be used to broadcast a frequency change request.
Ideally, the broadcasts consist of:
- Calling the embassy in SITOR-A, with initial chatter
- Calling the embassy using the proprietary Codan Chirp calling mode
- Transferring messages using the proprietary Codan 9001/3012 data waveform
- End of transmission chatter in SITOR-A
However, quite often, SITOR-A is also used to transfer messages, typically in poor conditions. The operator chatter is in Arabic, and encoded using the ATU80 alphabet.
Initial chatter is usually traditional Arabic greetings. When a message is about to be sent, it is often indicated by the phrase "ﺍﺱﺕﻉﺩ" (get ready).
Regardless of the mode used to transfer the messages, they follow the same format. There are two different kinds of messages:
- Offline encrypted 5-digit hex group traffic; uppercase A..F, 1 space between groups, 10 groups per line, trailing space in each line
- Arabic cleartext
5-digit group messages originating from or addressed to the military intelligence in Cairo use English headers of the following format, line by line:
- "From : " followed by the name of the city where the embassy is located, or "71" in case of Cairo
- "To : " followed by the name of the city where the embassy is located, or "71" in case of Cairo
- "Time & Date : " followed by the timestamp of the message, in the following format: "11:57, Saturday, November 25, 2017"
- "Urgent" (no other values are being observed in this line)
- A separator in form of a variable number of equal signs
The occasional Arabic messages use simpler Arabic headers:
- Three equal signs
- "ﻡﻥ : " followed by the name of the city where the embassy is located, or a position name in case of Cairo
- "ﺍﻝﻱ : " followed by the name of the city where the embassy is located, or a position name in case of Cairo
- Three equal signs
End of message is marked by a variable number of N's.
Contacts always take place with Cairo directly. The stations use different ID's for the SITOR-A and Codan Chirp calling modes, both of which are structured to reflect the part of the world the embassy is in.
Additionally, MFA Cairo has multiple pairs of ID's on the network. While the Chirp ID's are seen every time a Codan link is being established, the SITOR-A ID's are used only in exceptional circumstances.
|KKVI||33305||Dar es Salaam|