US Chairman Ajit Pai has introduced a new proposal containing rules that would protect the country’s communications networks. The proposal will be reviewed by the Federal Communications Commission before the vote takes place on November 19th.
According to FCC Chairman, Ajit Pai, the US communications networks might be vulnerable to national security threats. To make the networks more secure, he proposed a two-part proposal to his colleagues at the Federal Communications Commission on October 28th.
The first of the two parts of the Chairman’s proposal is a draft called ‘Report and Order.’ If approved, its purpose would be to bar communications firms from using support received from FCC’s Universal Service Fund for the purpose of buying equipment from those organizations and services that are believed to be posing a threat to the US.
One example of such a threat would be Huawei Technologies — a China-based firm suspected of being used by Chinese intelligence agencies for spying on US citizens.
The second part of the proposal is a draft named ‘Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking.’ This draft proposes that some carriers that are receiving USF funds remove specific equipment and stop using services of specific companies. This would include firms that are considered a threat to the US national security, and instead of using the equipment and services of suspicious suppliers, they would be encouraged to transition to more trustworthy sources.
Furthermore, the draft would also require collecting additional information that would allow the authorities to assess which carriers need to change their suppliers, and which suppliers can be trusted.
Chairman also stated that the arrival of 5G might put America’s security in jeopardy and that the country cannot afford to take risks while just hoping for the best. Instead, his proposal was designed to ensure that the US communications networks would not be harmed, or misused to harm the country’s national or economic security.
He stresses that China is a great threat to both, especially since Chinese law requires China’s companies to comply with the government’s requests, as well as with those of its intelligence services. Pai wants to ensure that the FCC plays its part in protecting the country and its citizens.
What do you think about the Chairman’s proposal? Do you think that telecommunications carriers might be used by foreign threats to spy on the US? Tell us your thoughts in the comments below.
Images are courtesy of Pixabay, Shutterstock.