FCC Auction Authority Expiring

Last week, FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel testified before the House Energy and Commerce subcommittee and urged lawmakers to act quickly to reauthorize the FCC’s authority to conduct spectrum auctions. The Commission’s auction authority is set to expire in September, which could cause issues with the agency’s 2.5 GHz band auction set to begin in July. Chairwoman Rosenworcel proposed a plan that recommends extending the Commission’s auction authority while committing to have auction revenues support a nationwide upgrade to next-generation 911. 

FBI Warns of Ransomware Attacks on Local Government Agencies

On March 31, the FBI released a Private Industry Notification warning of ransomware attacks on local government agencies that have resulted in disrupted operational services, risks to public safety, and financial losses. As we have previously reported, (here, here, and here), the FCC, Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, Federal Bureau of Investigation, and National Security Agency have repeatedly advised U.S. entities to remain alert and protect against the rising incidence of ransomware attacks and other types of cyber-attacks and security incidents. 

Receiver Performance Notice of Inquiry

The FCC released a draft Notice of Inquiry last week seeking to develop an up-to-date record on the role of receivers in spectrum management and how to best promote improvements in receiver interference immunity performance. The FCC has typically relied on rules establishing transmitter requirements to promote spectrum efficiency, but with spectrum use becoming more tightly packed together, the Commission must consider more closely efficiencies across all aspects of wireless systems. The Commission will consider the Notice of Inquiry at its Open Meeting on April 21.

RDOF Eighth Round Funding

The FCC issued a Public Notice on March 25 announcing that it is ready to authorize more than $313 million in support through the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund (“RDOF”) (Vol. XIX, Issue 6). The funding would go toward new broadband developments in 19 states bringing service to over 130,000 locations. To date, the RDOF has authorized over $5 billion in funding for new developments in 47 states to over 2.8 million locations.