CCA Joins CCIA, ITTA, and NTCA in Opposition to FCC’s Proposal Prohibit USF-Supported Carriers from Purchasing Certain Equipment to the Detriment of Consumers and Competition
Washington, DC – July 2, 2018 – Today, in joint reply comments filed with the Federal Communications Commission (“FCC” or “Commission”), Competitive Carriers Association (“CCA”), the Computer & Communications Industry Association (“CCIA”), ITTA – The Voice of America’s Broadband Providers (“ITTA”), and NTCA – The Rural Broadband Association (“NTCA”) (collectively, “the Associations”), opposed the FCC’s proposed rule to prohibit the use of money distributed from the Universal Service Fund (“USF”) to purchase or obtain equipment or services from any providers identified as posing a national security risk to communications networks or the communications supply chain. The Associations fully support efforts to protect the United States’ telecommunications supply chain from malicious actors. But the FCC’s proposed rule is not the answer. The FCC and other expert agencies should address the overarching national security threats in our nation’s telecommunications network.
“CCA and its members are committed to enhancing cybersecurity and supporting network security initiatives to protect our nation’s telecommunications network from bad actors,” said CCA President & CEO Steven K. Berry, “But the proposed rule will devastate impacted rural carriers, which execute the FCC’s mission to expand high-quality access to telecommunications and information services. It would especially harm rural consumers placing them at jeopardy with little to no national security benefit. The proposed rule is punitive and disproportionate to a small group of providers of service to rural America and will cause more harm than good.”
“For these reasons, CCA, along with CCIA, ITTA, and NTCA encourage the Commission to consider a whole-government approach to address this issue. While the Commission’s goals are laudable, the proposed rule will not achieve its stated national security objectives. If the FCC moves forward with this rulemaking, it should, at minimum, solicit further comment in a Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking and adopt provisions that mitigate the proposed rule’s potential impact. An updated, more detailed proposal will secure the nation’s networks while avoiding harm to the industry and, most importantly, consumers. ”
CCA is the nation’s leading association for competitive wireless providers and stakeholders across the United States. The licensed service area of CCA’s nearly 100 carrier members covers 95 percent of the nation. Visit www.ccamobile.org.
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