Telecommunications

News & Analysis as of

National Telecommunications & Information Administration Issues “Voluntary Best Practices” For Commercial And Private Use Of...

On May 19, 2016, the National Telecommunications & Information Administration (“NTIA”) issued a document outlining voluntary best practices for the non-commercial and commercial use of unmanned aircraft systems (“UAS”), or...more

FCC Issues Tariff Investigation Order and NPRM Which Proposes to Substantially Revise and Expand the Regulation of Business Data...

In May 2016, the FCC moved forward with its decade-overdue reform of the $45 Billion per year dedicated business data services (“BDS”) market. BDS providers, including major incumbent telecommunications companies and now even...more

FCC Seeks Comment on Accessibility Issues/Compliance for the 2016 Biennial CVAA Report

On Monday, May 23, 2016, the Consumer and Government Affairs Bureau (CGB or Bureau) of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC or Commission) released a Public Notice seeking comment on the state of compliance with the...more

Competition News May 2016

Divesture commitments in a merger operation: reminder to maintain the profitability of the transferred business - On April 19, 2016, the French Competition Authority (FCA) once again punished the failure to respect the...more

California Telecom Providers File Suit to Protect Competitively Sensitive Information

On May 5, AT&T Mobility along with several other telecommunications providers and trade associations filed a complaint in the Northern District of California against the California Public Utilities Commission (“CPUC”)...more

Let’s Go Crazy: The FTC and FCC Launch “Parallel” Investigations Into Security Updates of Mobile Communications Industry

Earlier this week, the FTC and FCC announced “parallel” investigations into how carriers and mobile device makers release information on vulnerabilities, and how and when mobile security patches are distributed. The...more

Caribou Coffee faces TCPA class action for unwanted text messages

Caribou Coffee Co. Inc. (Caribou Cofee) was hit with a class action this week in Wisconsin. which alleges that the company violated the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) when it sent unsolicited text messages to...more

FTC Settles with Texas Payment Solutions Company to Resolve “Phone Bill Cramming” Allegations

On May 4, the FTC announced a $5.2 million proposed settlement with a Texas-based payment solutions company to resolve allegations that the company, in violation of a 1999 settlement order with the FTC, permitted third...more

EEOC Sues Mobile Destination For Disability Discrimination

Mobile Phone Retailer's Management Withdrew Job Offer to Salesman Because He Uses a Wheelchair, Federal Agency Charges - HOUSTON - Mobile Destination, Inc., a mobile phone retailer which operates 30 Verizon Wireless...more

NESC 2017 Edition to Revise Several Rules Pertinent to Joint Use and Pole Attachments

The National Electrical Safety Code (“NESC”), published by the IEEE Standards Association (“IEEE”), is the foremost standard for constructing communications plant using existing utility pole infrastructure. For 100 years,...more

Petition Before The FCC To Recognize Text Messaging As A Telecommunications Service Under Title II Of The Communications Act Heats...

On April 26, 2016, the Secretary of the Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”) released the FCC’s list of ex parte presentations, disclosing that Twilio had conducted an ex parte meeting with FCC staff to discuss its...more

The Lifeline Modernization Order

Last week, the FCC finally released the full, 224-page text of its controversial and anxiously awaited Lifeline Modernization Order, which was approved by a bitterly divided, party-line 3-2 vote on March 31. As we advised in...more

Senators Take Steps to Ban Arbitration Clauses in Telecommunications Contracts

On Thursday, April 28, 2016, Senators Al Franken (D-Minn.) and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) proposed legislation that would ban arbitration clauses in telecommunication service contracts. The proposed bill, the Justice for...more

Telemedicine nursing licensure compact legislation enacted in 6 states and 7 more right behind

In another case of technology out pacing the law, telemedicine has continued to push the limits of state medical professional licensure laws. Generally, physicians and nurses must be licensed in the state in which they...more

Court Grants Motion Of Non-Signatory To Compel Arbitration Of Privacy Violation Claims Of Putative Class Of Verizon Customers

The class action was brought by Verizon subscribers against a “targeted advertising” company business partner of Verizon (Turn, Inc.) for deceptive trade practices under New York law. Plaintiffs alleged that Turn violated...more

Sprint Communications Inc. Asks the U.S. Supreme Court to Hear Bundling Issue

On February 18, 2016, Sprint Communications Inc. filed a petition for a writ of certiorari asking the United States Supreme Court to review the New York Court of Appeals’ denial of Sprint’s attempt to dismiss the...more

Results mixed for Illinois texting while driving ban

Laws passed in 2014 to curb distracted driving, especially texting while driving, may have helped some, but fatalities and accidents in the Chicago area are still going up, studies show. A University of Illinois safety study...more

Stolen user credentials account for over half of all data breaches in 2015

Verizon recently released its yearly Data Breach Investigations Report and as always, the report is a very informative read. The report gathered information from more than 64,000 security incidents worldwide in 2015, 2,260 of...more

Banking By Phone Requires More Demanding Responsibilities for Bank Management and the Board of Directors

Competition and technology are demanding that banks provide more convenient payment choices for consumers. Consequently, banks are offering mobile financial services (MFS) that can be accessed through mobile devices such as...more

The FCC’s Proposed Privacy Regulations: What They Mean for ISPs and Those That Do Business with Them

The Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”) recently issued a proposed set of privacy regulations that, if passed, will have broad implications for broadband providers, as well as for the companies that collect or receive...more

Court of Appeal Sustains CPUC's Discretion to Fill Gaps in Statutory Scheme for Intervenor Compensation but Requires CPUC to Limit...

The California Court of Appeal (1st Dist., Div. 4) issued an important decision on April 19, 2016, in New Cingular Wireless PCS, LLC v. Public Utilities Commission, addressing a determination by the California Public...more

FCC Releases Eagerly Anticipated Lifeline Order

Four weeks after voting 3-2 along party lines to modernize the Lifeline program; the FCC has finally released the text of the Order. The new Lifeline rules: Provide a mechanism for Lifeline subsidies to support broadband...more

The FCC’s Privacy NPRM: A Closer Look at the Commission’s Legal Authority and Some of Its Proposals

As we have previously advised, the FCC’s proposed rulemaking to “protect the privacy of customers of broadband and other telecommunications services” (the “NPRM”) proposes sweeping changes to the ways that Internet Service...more

U.S. Spy Court Grants NSA Permission To Collect Telephone Records

The U.S. Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (“FISA Court”) unsealed an order on April 19, 2016, in which it allowed the National Security Agency (“NSA”) to compel specific telephone records related to an ongoing...more

Privacy Tip #31 – Landlines still a safe way to communicate but telephone companies want to drop them

I am pretty up to date on data privacy and security and technology, but the 60 Minutes episode this past Sunday night floored even me. If you didn’t see it, it is worth streaming. Basically, 60 Minutes showed Karsten...more

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