This series started with https://k9zw.wordpress.com/2019/09/10/im-a-ham-or-am-i/
With the recent FCC admonishment to the Amateur Radio community to “not commit crimes using amateur radio” begs first the obvious question asking what is up with the FCC, but it is the second question of “what can we do to help?” that is of more importance to the radio amateur.
How can we “Counter the Nefarious?”
Reality is the segment of society involved in ham radio may share some commonality, but also includes a wide enough swath to have a few bad actors in the bunch.
Some are garden variety troll-type folk who act out on the air, online or are just schadenfreude in real life. The majority of these folk are pretty easy to identify and not very hard to keep away at arms length or further.
But here and there a few actual nefarious people join the ranks of amateur radio or make it their business to interfere with a ham. Lets call these “In the Ranks” and “External,” and have a look at what a ham can do.
Doing the easy one first, External Nefarious actors are most efficiently mitigated by distancing. Keep these folk away from you. Never feed them a reason to continue their involvement with you, and do what you can to ignore them. If laws have been broken you will face a decision as what to do, a decision where specific evaluation of the situation will lead to your best path as your remember your primary goal to distance them from you. Avoid diverting them to other victims, unless you have the opportunity to divert their attention to another nefarious sort.
The Internal “In the Ranks” are the most worrisome and difficult to deal with. Clubs have had to deal with hams who were molesters, thieves and conmen. These are the sort that use the camouflage of the amateur radio community to further their ill-deeds.
Identify, Mitigate and Remove seems to be a sensible approach. Whether to turn these folk in to the authorities depends on the level of evidence that is available.
Presently is it seldom a worthwhile effort to ask the FCC pull their ham licenses, as the process doesn’t work and mostly wastes you time.
More on In-the-Ranks in Part II