Public Safety Communications Europe, together with a total of 30 other supporters including PPDR organisations, industry, and associations, has jointly approved a list of comments to the ECC (Electronic Communications Committee) draft report 239 and report 218, both of which consider the creation of harmonised conditions and spectrum bands for the implementation of future European broadband PPDR systems.
The Electronic Communications Committee (ECC) is a sub-body of the European Conference of Postal and Telecommunications Administrations (CEPT), an organisation where European policy makers and regulators collaborate to strengthen the market in the electronic communications and postal sectors. The ECC report focuses on the frequency, technology and implementation of aspects related to broadband PPDR communications and describes and evaluates the frequency for BB-PPDR. Continue reading →
A new paper from the National Governors Association makes the case that governors can promote cybersecurity and improve security capabilities by including cybersecurity in the missions of fusion centers set up following the September 2001 terrorist attacks. The paper suggests that governors can take several steps to include cybersecurity in the scope of the fusion centers, including: creating shared cybersecurity missions among homeland security, emergency management, information technology, and law enforcement personnel; assessing a fusion center’s capabilities to manage cybersecurity missions; develop business and operations plans for fusion centers; and implement strategies to reach out to the private sector to identify information-sharing processes.
“Because of the growing number of threats to our cyber infrastructure, looking at adding or expanding cybersecurity capabilities within fusion centers make sense and provides states an important opportunity,” said Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder, in a statement. “By expanding their role, we protect not only our states’ cybersecurity but the public safety of each of our citizens.”
Public safety officials say the FCC should move forward with expanded reporting requirements on telecommunications carriers related to outages affecting 911 services, but carriers tell the FCC that the agency should simplify reporting requirements and refrain from requiring “over-reporting” of minor issues.
The FCC released a notice of proposed rulemaking March 30 in PS docket 15-80 seeking comment on proposals to improve and update its Part 4 outage reporting rules (TRDaily, March 30). The notice proposes to require providers to report any outages that “significantly” degrade or prevent the completion of 911 calls to public safety answering points (PSAPs), not just total outages, and to allow states to access outage information covering their states.
In comments filed July 16, the Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials-International, Inc., supported the FCC’s proposal to “clarify that any network malfunction or higher-level issue that significantly degrades or prevents 911 calls from being completed constitutes a ‘loss of communications to PSAP(s),’ regardless of whether the PSAP is rendered completely unable to receive 911 calls.”.
“Clearly, knowledge of a significant degradation of service short of a complete failure is of very high value to PSAPs and emergency managers,” APCO said.
In response to the FCC’s query on how a provider should determine that there is a need to report a partial loss of communications to a PSAP, APCO recommended that the FCC require an outage report when at least half of the trunks serving any given PSAP are out of service. Continue reading →
The FCC’s Enforcement Bureau announced a $17.5 million settlement with T-Mobile US, Inc., to resolve an investigation into two 911 service outages on the carrier’s national network last year.
T-Mobile’s network suffered two separate but related 911 outages on Aug. 8, 2014 that lasted a combined three hours. The outages prevented callers nationwide from reaching first responders when making calls to 911 on T-Mobile’s network, the bureau said in a public notice today.
In its investigation, the bureau found that T-Mobile did not provide timely notification of the outages to all affected 911 call centers, as required by FCC rules. The probe also found that the outages were the result of T-Mobile’s failure to implement “appropriate safeguards” in its 911 network architecture. Continue reading →
LightSquared and Trimble Navigation Ltd. asked a federal judge today to stay discovery for 45 days in a court case to allow parties to see if they can resolve technical issues that led to the litigation and have resulted in extended proceedings before the FCC and other federal agencies. In a filing with Judge Richard Berman of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Southern District of New York, LightSquared and Trimble, a manufacturer of GPS equipment, sought “the Court’s assistance in advancing settlement discussions.
“Based on recent exchanges, LightSquared and Trimble believe there is now an opportunity for the parties to have a constructive dialogue and to engage in a process aimed at a global resolution of the pending technical issues related to the use of LightSquared spectrum that gave rise to the present disputes—including this case and ongoing proceedings before the FCC and other government agencies,” today’s filing said. “To facilitate settlement discussions and help the parties advance toward a final resolution, LightSquared and Trimble ask the Court to stay discovery for 45 days. During this period, LightSquared and Trimble would work cooperatively to engage constituencies and stakeholders to discuss ways to bring full closure to the disputes that prompted this lawsuit and their disagreements before the FCC. As the parties noted for the Court at the June 9 status conference, such global discussions are necessary because the resolution of this case is necessarily bound up with resolving the pending issues before the FCC.” Continue reading →
FCC ADOPTS PLAN TO MODERNIZE FIELD OPERATIONS. Commission Moves Forward to Improve Efficiency, Conserve Resources, and Maintain Strong Enforcement Nationally. News Release. Adopted: 07/16/2015. News Media Contact: Will Wiquist at (202) 418-0509, email: Will.Wiquist@fcc.gov
WASHINGTON, July 16, 2015 – The Federal Communications Commission today adopted a plan to modernize the agency’s field operations within the Enforcement Bureau. The proposal will improve efficiency, better position the agency to do effective radio interference detection and resolution and meet other enforcement needs, and save millions of dollars annually after implementation is complete.
The Commission will require all field agents to be electrical engineers, and will continue to operate field offices in Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Columbia (Md.), Dallas, Denver, Honolulu, Los Angeles, Miami, New Orleans, New York, Portland (Ore.), and San Francisco. Offices in Anchorage, Buffalo, Detroit, Houston, Kansas City, Norfolk, Philadelphia, San Diego, San Juan, Seattle, and Tampa will be closed.
The Enforcement Bureau will maintain a field presence in Alaska and Puerto Rico and field agents will also rotate periodically through Kansas City. In addition, three offices will relocate to FCC-owned properties nearby to better utilize agency resources. Finally, rapid deployment teams will be stationed in Columbia (Md.) and Denver to supplement the enforcement efforts of other field offices when necessary and support high-priority enforcement actions nationwide.Continue reading →
Washington, D.C. – The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) today announced that another cybersecurity technology has been licensed for commercialization. This is S&T’s third technology that has successfully gone through the Transition to Practice (TTP) program and into the commercial market. The Network Mapping System (NeMS), developed by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, is a software-based tool that tells users what is connected to their network so that they know what needs to be protected. This new technology is being licensed to Cambridge Global Advisors, an Arlington, Va. based strategic advisory services firm.
“The brilliant minds of the nation’s network of national laboratories are coming up with incredible technologies and solutions,” said DHS Under Secretary for Science and Technology Dr. Reginald Brothers. “Transitioning those ideas into the commercial market where they can be put to practical use is a primary objective for S&T.”
The Public Safety Communications Research (PSCR) program is signing up a new round of industry partners for its public safety test bed network in the Boulder, Colo., area. Thirty-nine telecom companies have signed new five-year Cooperative Research and Development Agreements (CRADAs), said Program Manager Dereck Orr. “The current version of the PSCR demonstration network was developed with equipment and support from more than 70 vendors,” according to a news release.
Following from the July 22 FCC Daily Digest is the full text of the NPRM proposing some changes to the FCC’s equipment certification program. Comments are due 30 days after publication in the Federal Register:
AMENDMENT OF PARTS 0, 1, 2, 15 AND 18 OF THE COMMISSION’S RULES REGARDING AUTHORIZATION OF RADIOFREQUENCY EQUIPMENT; REQUEST FOR THE ALLOWANCE OF OPTIONAL ELECTRONIC LABELING FOR WIRELESS DEVICES. Proposed to update the rules that govern the evaluation and approval of RF devices. (Dkt No. 15-170 RM-11673 ). Action by: the Commission. Adopted: 07/17/2015 by NPRM. (FCC No. 15-92). OET