Federal Privacy Bill, Broadband Data Collection
Minnesota 911 Tariff Complaint
The Minnesota Public Utilities Commission (“PUC”) issued a comment period notice on June 6 seeking comment on whether to initiate an investigation into 10 local utility companies (“LECs”) following a complaint from the Department of Public Security (“DPS”) in May. DPS recently engaged LECs to facilitate migration to new interconnect points to support its transition to next-generation 911. DPS agreed to pay rates on a case-by-case basis to compensate LECs for the cost of delivering 911 calls, but 10 LECs refused to migrate unless DPS paid a fee based on rates that DPS considered ” obsolete”. The PUC is seeking comments and responses to comments regarding the potential investigation by July 8 and July 29, respectively.
Federal Bipartisan Data Privacy Bill Released
On June 3, House and Senate leaders released a draft discussion of US data protection and privacy law. The law governs the collection, processing, and transfer of “covered data” by entities subject to the jurisdiction of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), nonprofit organizations, and telecommunications carriers, and the term “covered data is broadly defined to include information that identifies or is linked or reasonably linked to an individual or a device that identifies or is linked or reasonably linked to an individual. The law imposes an obligation to ensure that data collection is reasonably necessary, proportionate and limited, an obligation to implement reasonable policies, practices and procedures for the collection, processing and transfer of covered data, and safeguards. Enhanced security for sensitive data. The law also requires covered entities to provide privacy policies, prohibit targeted advertising to persons under 17, and include individual rights to access, delete, correct, and export data. Big data holders would be required to ensure that their algorithms do not violate consumers’ civil rights. Violations would be treated as an unfair or deceptive act or practice under FTC law, and the law also provides a private right of action. The law would largely override state privacy laws, with a few exceptions.
Broadband Data Collection Enforcement Notice
Last week, the FCC issued an enforcement notice reminding facility-based providers that failure to timely file required data into the new Broadband Data Collection (“BDC”) system may result in enforcement action (vol. XIX, number 23). Vendors can begin submitting their data on June 30, 2022 and must complete their submissions by September 1, 2022. The Commission has established a base forfeiture of $15.00 per violation for vendors who submit materially inaccurate or incomplete.
Amended Spectrum Innovation Act of 2022
On June 15, Congressman Bob Latta (R-OH) proposed a substituted nature amendment to the Spectrum Innovation Act of 2022 (Vol. XIX, Number 18) which passed in unanimity. The Act would authorize an auction of 200 MHz of spectrum in the 3.1-3.45 GHz band for non-federal use and shared federal and non-federal use. If passed, auction proceeds will be used to fund Next Generation 911 (“NG911”) grants and the Secure and Reliable Communications Network Reimbursement Program.
Gregory Kunkle, Casey Lide, Thomas Magee, Tracy Marshall, Kathleen Slattery Thompson, Sean Stokes and Wesley Wright also contributed to this article.