Tuesday, April 10, 2007


As we are just a month out from the May 14th deadline for CALEA compliance, things are shaking. Companies are popping up with services, like Bearhill and OPENCALEA (and a few others listed in this article from ISP-Planet). According to Alex Goldman at ISP-Planet:

"Many ISPs still believe that the CALEA definition of "facilities-based" is the same as the 1996 act definition, but they're wrong. For the purposes of CALEA, an ISP must comply if it owns equipment."

WISPA (the wireless ISP association) has put together a FAQ that can be found on ISP-Planet.

Router maker, ImagineStream, may have the answer to some of your equipment compliance issues with their new release. Other hardware manufacturers are working feverishly on compliance. Many VOIP hardware platforms like SS8 and Acme Packet have already created a Mediation device, but this hardware solution is expensive.

Of course, there are alternatives. ISPs can explain to the FCC why they are unable to comply at this time. ISPs can also hire a Trusted Third Party (TTP) to collect the data and hand it over securely to the LEAs. [source]

My opinion is that this will be the end of many VOIP providers - IF they get caught. Just like with the E-911 and USF rules that are required to be followed, there is no active enforcement. But the penalties on this stuff will close your business.

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