On September 1, 2020, the Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau (“PSHSB”) released a Public Notice seeking comment on making Wi-Fi access points and other communications technologies operating on unlicensed spectrum available to the public for access to 911 services during emergencies where mobile service is unavailable, as directed by Congress in the RAY BAUM’S Act of 2018.

 

Specifically, the PSHSB seeks comment on the technical and operational complexities of giving the public access for 911 services on telecommunications service provider-owned Wi-Fi access points during emergencies; “alternative means” that could be used to provide open access to 911 services during emergencies where mobile networks are unavailable; how to route 911 calls to the appropriate Public Safety Answering Point (“PSAP”) with the caller’s location; and the cost of provisioning consumer devices to support open Wi-Fi for 911 services.  The PSHSB also seeks comment on cybersecurity, privacy, and congestion issues that could arise from open access to Wi-Fi for 911 calls.

 

Comments are due October 1, 2020

Reply Comments are due October 16, 2020

 

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