Receive-Only Radio Scanners Guidance

UK Regulator Ofcom has provided guidance in relation to the legal position of reception of radio transmissions by unauthorised persons or groups 

It notes that the services that can be listened to under the definition of general reception are:

  • licensed broadcasting stations;
  • amateur and citizens' band radio transmissions; and
  • weather and navigation transmissions

Radio scanners should not be used to listen to any other radio services, including illegal radio stations (pirates - by virtue of the fact that they are not licensed radio stations). 

Ofcom advise there are two criminal offences, under section 48 of the Wireless Telegraphy Act 2006, relating to unauthorised reception.

More information -