Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Your ability to get broadband might be at risk

Of course, the CALEA issue has more questions than answers. More fear than logic. And it is shrouded in the Privacy Issue. We all know that the FCC did a illogical stretch to include Broadband and VoIP (information services) in CALEA which has been traditionally about telecommunications. But we live in the New America. The Patriot Act I & II. The NSA tapping AT&T for sure and other LEC's probably. Here's an article from Free Republic.

The CALEA requirement has been fought to the federal appeals court by the American Library Association and the ACE (American Council of Education). (See article here from June, 2006).

In a 29-page decision, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit upheld the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) decision to extend CALEA provisions to the Internet and providers of facilities-based Internet access or voice-over-IP. At the same time, the court reaffirmed provisions within CALEA that specifically exempt private networks, such as those operated by many colleges and universities, from such regulation by the FCC.

This battle has raged on since 2004. At this point, if you own an ISP, WISP, NSP, your main focus should be on compliance, not on hope or anger or frustration or how to fight this. (I'm not sure in today's America it can be fought). Penalties are huge for non-compliance. By not filing a plan with the FCC by May 14, you may be subject to a fine up to $1M. For every day that you cannot fulfill a subpoena, it is $10,000. So compliance should be your primary focus. After that, you can think about ways to fight this ridiculous invasion of privacy.

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