CellAntenna Corporation filed a request for special temporary authority (an “STA”) with the FCC to conduct a 15-minute demonstration of its wireless signal jamming technology at a vacant Maryland prison. According to Maryland officials, the demonstration will be postponed pending FCC approval. Despite ongoing concerns about jamming equipment interfering with operations of commercial wireless networks, government officials remain interested in the technologies as one way to deter prison inmates from using smuggled wireless phones.
In related matters, the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (“NTIA”) is reviewing the results of tests it recently conducted using CellAntenna’s equipment in its Boulder, Colorado labs. According to NTIA, it does not have authority to permit the use of jamming technologies by non-federal entities, including state agencies that may house federal inmates, but if the Boulder tests are successful, NTIA will work with the Federal Bureau of Prisons to schedule a test at a Maryland federal prison. The lab test results are expected to be reported by the end of January.