Denver Thermostat Control Lockout Shows ‘Smart’ Device Exploits Can Endanger Users

NRA-ILA Smart Gun
So-called ‘Smart Guns’ are anything but. Letting someone else control your thermostat in a heat wave makes as much sense as letting someone else control your gun during a life and death threat. IMG NRA-ILA

U.S.A. – -(Ammoland.com)- “Thousands of Xcel customers locked out of thermostats during ‘energy emergency’,” The Denver Channel reported Sept. 2. “Xcel confirmed … that 22,000 customers who had signed up for the Colorado AC Rewards program were locked out of their smart thermostats for hours on Tuesday.”

The lockout happened with temperatures in the 90s, with “some reporting home temperatures as high as 88 degrees.”

“It’s a voluntary program,” corporate flack Emmett Romine, vice president of customer solutions and innovation at Xcel protested in an obvious attempt to deflect and mitigate criticism. “Let’s remember that this is something that customers choose to be a part of based on the incentives.”

Yeah, well he didn’t know giving up control meant someone else would take it, one customer who signed up for price credits countered. Besides, he thought an emergency meant, you know, an emergency.

People don’t pay attention to the fine print. They don’t seem to realize that the people in control are the ones calling the shots, meaning an emergency is what they say it is.

How smart is that?

In this case, fortunately for all concerned, reports thus far are limited to periods of discomfort and disgruntlement. It doesn’t take much imagination, though, to envision vulnerable segments of the population like the elderly or the ill suffering real health consequences.

So fixed income and physically weakened customers shouldn’t sign up, right? Problem solved? After all, it’s “voluntary.”

For now.

The environmental cases are like gun-grabbers. They’re never satisfied with the incremental concessions they gain today but use those as secured objectives from which to launch their next incursions in a relentless march toward their end goals.

The similarities don’t end there.

12 years ago, media reports were noting:

“If you’re crawling through traffic in 2025 and approach a traffic light, IBM hopes it will be able to take control of your car. And according to the patent, you won’t be able to go again until it lets you. …With a laptop and customised software called CarShark, the researchers disabled the brakes of a regular family car and switched its engine off – while it was moving.”

Naturally, there’s always a “good” reason given for doing this. “Commonsense safety.” That’s the standard excuse for giving up all kinds of freedom to government control.

Yes, government control. That’s where it always ends up. From the 2010 report:

“In 2008, it became mandatory for all American cars to be fitted with CAN (Controller Area Network), a standard protocol for enabling all the car’s electronics to talk to each other, so there’s one part of the puzzle in place.”

OK, but this site is AmmoLand. What does any of this have to do with guns?

Some of us have been raising this warning flag for as long as we’ve been warning people about so-called “smart guns.” From “Things to Come,” a Guns and Ammo article I wrote in 2002:

But perhaps the most immediate and insidious threat we face from technology comes under the guise of “safety— for the children,” so-called “smart guns” under development and soon to be required in a state near you. Because…they’re also lobbying for another technology they developed to be required on cars— a “shutoff switch” that police can activate by remote control, making the rest of us pay for the infinitesimal fraction of drivers who lead them on car chases.

As writer Vin Suprynowicz warns (and I and some others independently predicted), this technology could be used by the police as “an `electronic master key’ to `disable’ any `smart guns’ in the house,” and be used as a pretext to “ban the manufacture of any gun that ISN’T a `smart gun’.”

So police can turn guns fitted with one “off” and incapable of firing—and that could be mandated. Anybody doubt it will be if remote shutoff technology becomes widespread?

Does anybody doubt anti-gun activists, opportunistic politicians, ambitious police chiefs, LEO unions, and the like won’t demand it in the name of “public and officer safety”? Does anybody doubt they won’t challenge the motives of anyone who would resist such a “reasonable restriction,” painting them as “anti-government extremists”? Especially when this technology would enable them to do more than post a sign in “gun-free zones”?

Of course, criminals would ignore such laws. They would remove disablers in violation of edicts threatening federal felony sentences and fines. The smarter ones would learn how to hack into the system—and turn off cars, guns, and whatever else suits their purposes. And yes, of course, police would be exempted (like with “smart guns,” initially developed in response to police gun takeaway” incidents, they’re not about to trust their lives to this nonsense)…

Here’s another similarity: “Smart guns” have been presented as consumer alternatives, with perceived incentives to make them worth it to a certain segment of the market. In other words, like the thermostat lockout, they’re presented as “voluntary.”

Do you remember what the state of New Jersey did when they showed their cards too soon and tried to mandate “smart guns” only? It’s like those demanding to control their countrymen are excitable children who can’t control themselves. Never underestimate the megalomaniacal obsession that drives the violence monopolists. How else would you define the overarching compulsion to control every aspect of everyone else’s life exhibited in every new “gun law” introduced?

What they’re really going for, of course, are “commonsense tyrant safety laws.” And here’s how they get their foot in the door:

A new law proposed by President Joe Biden is set to increase the ubiquity of kill switches in new vehicles by the year 2026.

A plan comes together.


About David Codrea:

David Codrea is the winner of multiple journalist awards for investigating/defending the RKBA and a long-time gun owner rights advocate who defiantly challenges the folly of citizen disarmament. He blogs at “The War on Guns: Notes from the Resistance,” is a regularly featured contributor to Firearms News, and posts on Twitter: @dcodrea and Facebook.

David Codrea

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Boom

Mr. Codrea,

Hi. My name is Boom.

In my humble opinion, I believe this to be the best article you’ve written….or at least in recent memory.

Great job.

‘ya done good’

Sound the Charge.

Arny

I always look forward to his writings.

uncle dudley

When you give up your own control you give up freedom, we see how that’s going with the current administration.
The America I knew as a kid in the fifties and sixties doesn’t exist anymore and it’s getting worse year by year.

Cruiser

The late sixties was the begining of the end of polite society and “the greatist generation” allowed it to happen.

swmft

they did not see that fdr was a commie , most people were just trying to survive the depression went from 1929 till 1942 news was pure propaganda, drought across the plains …the many things done by government with this obscurity like gca need to be fixed and we have the chance

swmft

then they went to war……the ones that came back whole were looking to forget ..there were some who saw problems macarthy saw some of it but was hoodwinked by fbi and others at least 100,000 machine guns came back from that war and korea to privet hands, how many are still in barns and garages,attics is anyones guess , people were starting to get past color and understand character is all that counts , then we get the give it all away democrats and trash the idea of family …the last 100 years has been a slow motion train wreck… Read more »

Last edited 17 days ago by swmft
Coelacanth

Not fair, knocking the Greatest Generation for that. They were busy working all the time, to build what became the greatest nation to ever exist. Blame the educational system for the pervasive rot that now exists. The latest generation seems to be more concerned with virtual worlds, not the actual one where stuff needs to be done. A nation of lazy emeffers cannot exist for long.

Wild Bill

Out here in rural East Texas, that America still exists and thrives. My neighbors kids ride around on horses, motorbikes, have two or three dogs, participate in baseball, hay bale time, and rodeo, and just love to get my old pistol belt, canteens, canteen cups, canteen covers and various BDUs.

I’ve not yet found a democrat, although I suppose that they exist, down here. And of course, gun control means sight picture and trigger control.

So let’s not give up just too soon.

Last edited 17 days ago by Wild Bill
swmft

many rural places still have a measure of freedom, but go look at your local 5 and dime or dollar store for surplus machine guns…..good luck …send your grand child to pick up a few boxes of shells to go plinking …even in the best of places the commie pinkos have done damage

Last edited 17 days ago by swmft
Oldvet

WB… You might have to explain once again what a Bar-B-Q gun is . I explained it last time but apparently it didn’t take .

Wild Bill

A barbecue gun is your prettiest gun that you want to show off when the neighbors invite you over for barbecue. For example, I have a first generation Colt that is ornately engraved and has ivory grips. It looks great in a black holster, but I would never shoot it.

Coelacanth

God Bless the Republic of Texas! Her Star shines brightly. May it ever be so! I’m in Southern Michigan, y’all

Knute Knute

It’s largely the same here in Montana. But its easy to find the democrats here. The schools and Courthouses are full of them. Nowhere in the real world can I find one, but they sure do like power over others. The younger, and the more naive and submissive the better.

Oldvet

The only hope to save us from ourselves is Perhaps God will cause one of those sun spots to strike the earth and fry all of that electrical stuff .

DDS

“fry all of that electrical stuff”

Why wait?

Why depend on a Deus Ex Machina?

Besides, doesn’t the good Lord help those who help themselves?

Fry it yourself!

https://www.instructables.com/How-to-blockkill-RFID-chips/

Oldvet

DDS … are you a dentist ? I did read an article that says taking out the right nine substations would put this country in the dark and it could be done by computer . I WAS being sarcastic at first !

Boom

Haha I asked that same question the other day…

Russn8r

Thanks. What if you hammer your passport then try to travel internationally? They still let you?

nrringlee

Complexity is the enemy of reliability. The so-called ‘smart gun’ technology is completely unproven and just like capacity and feature bans constitute and unreasonable infringement on the exercise of an enumerated right.

Bob

Hard to believe that if they mandate “Smart Guns”, that somehow 400-600 million “Dumb Guns” will simply go away.

Arny

Especially with access to metal lathes & 3d printing. lol

swmft

cnc in a jar make whatever you want (not need) safe from emp and eyes.

Patriot Solutions

Denver getting what they deserve is worth celebrating. Here in the high country we wish Denver would burn to the ground being the toxic waste site it is.

Now, I’m off to the lake for some evening fishing to punish myself for my white supremacist hate speech. This is going to teach me a valuable lesson and help make me a better person. LMFAO

Cruiser

A few years ago our energy provider anounced a program to lower our energy cost by allowing them to monitor our thermastats. It sounded
like a good deal for about two seconds, thank you but no. I’ll control my own
comfort.

HankB

On thermostats . . . from what I’ve read in the news, they haven’t been remotely turning A/C OFF completely, they’ve been setting temperatures to higher than comfortable levels. That is easily defeated – take a heat lamp, incandescent utility light, hair dryer, or some other heat source and use it to warm up the thermostat – you’ll “fool” it into registering a temperature even higher than what it was remotely set to, and you’ll get some cooling for the rest of your house. I can even see enclosing the thermostat in a little box with a small heat source… Read more »

Arny

I would visit Lowes for a New thermostat. I volunteer Not to be a part of your program at this point. lol

Last edited 17 days ago by Arny
DDS

We had “smart” HVAC controls at work. We rigged a 750 watt soldering iron cage to the concrete column just below the master thermostat, put the iron in the cage, plugged it in, problem solved. Keep in mind that while these folks may be “in charge”, that doesn’t mean they’re particularly all that smart. If they were, they wouldn’t be writing all these laws with “loopholes” in them. A case in point. Pre-“shall issue”, a Florida man was pulled over for some reason. A search of his car revealed an 1860 Colt replica under the driver’s seat. He was charged… Read more »

Wild Bill

That is an excellent example.

HLB

We must become proficient at device modification. A heating cage will work but just learn the HVAC wiring code and use wire jumpers or old fashioned bi-metallic elements to turn on your AC compressor, condenser, and evaporator fans. The color codes are available on-line. Yes, of course, Rudd and Rheem use slightly different codes but you can figure it out. Here is an example: Wire Color / Function B / This is for Rheem or Ruud only for the heat pump reversing valve. O / Other brands connected to Orange wire for reversing valve use. G / Connected to Green… Read more »

Oldvet

It works . I worked at Wally World for a short time after I retired . I ask why the lamp with the bulb and reflector was pointed at the thermostat , Because the thermostats were controlled from the home office and this fooled it !

Tank

It’s all about control, suppression of rights, truth & knowledge via corporate fascism no matter how much PTB, MSM, hired puppet Barking Moonbats say it isn’t. Libtards/Dems are just Canon Fodder for the EL-ite’s to use as cover & concealment. No country ever thrived under socialism/communism/fascism.

Last edited 17 days ago by Tank
Rob J

Something many of you will not know… 42 USC 629(e)(6)(A)(ii) requires all residential electric water heaters 75 gallons and greater (most homes with a spa tub or more than 2 baths require 75+ gallon tanks) to be “grid enabled” with a physical locking device or software activation lock with the key being dispensed only to utility companies (effective 2015). The “grid enabled” water heater water production can be reduced or stopped by utility companies just the same as the thermostats were locked out. 75+ gallon tanks can be utilized “off grid” so long as they provide no greater than 50%… Read more »

Mike11C

Anyone who can figure out how something works can defeat the “limiting technology”. Take those thermostats for example, if you need A/C and, the power Nazis have limited your ability to cool your house by manipulating your “smart” thermostat, just take that thermostat off of the sub-base and jump across the red, yellow, and green wires. The sub-base is screwed to the wall and, the wires are attached to terminals. The thermostat just snaps onto it. For heat, jump the red, white, and green. Don’t worry about getting shocked, it’s only 28 volts and, about half an amp. The red… Read more »

Randy

I warned the NRA about this a few years ago. My wife (psych practitioner) and I (software engineer) have contributed thoughts and ideas well in advance of issues that have come to light and keep popping up. As a software engineer, I’m saying the tech exists to make a controllable “smart gun”. Think geo-fencing, check-ins, enable/disable, friend-or-foe, etc. They all will need to be registered to an app, probably right at the gun shop before walking out with it. The tech doesn’t even have to all fit in the firearm. It just needs connectivity and the 5G cloud. (BTW –… Read more »