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Ethan Lamb is an associate in the Corporate Practice Group in the firm's Washington, D.C. office. He is also a member of the firm's CFIUS Team.

As the FCC continues to exercise close oversight of the use of Customer Proprietary Network Information (“CPNI”), telecom stakeholders should also be sensitive to potential data security obligations under any relevant mitigation agreements with “Team Telecom,” the collection of Executive Branch agencies tasked with reviewing and resolving any national security implications related to foreign ownership of telecom providers.Continue Reading Data Security Is National Security: Inside the FCC Enforcement Bureau’s Latest Crackdown

While many venture capitalists and private equity sponsors are aware the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (“CFIUS”) has authority to review inbound investments in certain sensitive U.S. industries, many transaction parties may be unaware of CFIUS’s jurisdiction to also review the national security risks presented by real estate transactions involving foreign persons. Because real estate transactions do not trigger CFIUS’s mandatory filing requirements, it is uncommon for transaction parties to proactively seek CFIUS review of these deals.Continue Reading Know Thy Neighbor as Thyself: CFIUS Considerations in Commercial Real Estate Transactions

The FCC – in the latest iteration of its expanding role as a regulator in the national security space – recently adopted a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (“NPRM”) proposing to fortify the security of the wireless supply chain by imposing heightened requirements on the Telecommunication Certification Bodies (“TCBs”) and Measurement Facilities (“Test Labs”) that approve devices marketed and sold in the U.S.Continue Reading FCC to Strengthen Equipment Authorization Process to Protect U.S. National Security

Key Takeaways:  The Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”) sent a resounding message to the telecommunications industry: the era of lax CPNI enforcement is over.  

  • Mobile network operators (MNOs), mobile virtual network operators, Internet Service Providers, and Voice-Over-IP providers, and other operators subject to the FCC’s CPNI rules should be aware of the FCC’s expansive view on the kinds of data subject to the CPNI rules.

Continue Reading Dialing Up Accountability: FCC’s Warning Shot to Mobile Network Operators on CPNI

Key Takeaways: The Treasury Department is seeking to equip CFIUS with greater enforcement and oversight authority. These new powers include the ability to request more information from transaction parties and also to assess more significant penalties—in some cases, potentially greater than the transaction value—against companies who fail to comply with mandatory filing requirements or violate mitigation agreements.Continue Reading Treasury Department Proposes to Sharpen the Teeth of CFIUS Enforcement

As the battle for the future of the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) continues on Capitol Hill, and the FCC prepares for the looming shutdown of the program, providers should be aware that the FCC’s Enforcement Bureau (“Enforcement Bureau”) continues to investigate—and issue forfeitures—related to noncompliance with program rules, particularly around subscriber onboarding and usage of the ACP benefit by consumers.Continue Reading Enforcement Advisory: The FCC’s Enforcement Bureau Continues to Closely Review Provider Compliance with Affordable Connective Program Rules

On November 16, 2023, the Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”) released a Report & Order (“Order”) and Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (“FNPRM”), adopting measures to address two techniques bad actors frequently use to access victims’ cell phone accounts: (1) SIM swapping and (2) port-out fraud.Continue Reading Shutting Down the Cell Phone Scammers: The FCC Adopts Rules to Crack Down on Fraudulent Practices against Wireless Phone Users

Recently, the FCC reminded telecom providers that the cost of failing to protect their customers’ privacy is steep. In a July 28, 2023 Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture, the Federal Communications Commission fined Q Link Wireless LLC and Hello Mobile Telecom LLC, an affiliate of Q Link, $20 million for impermissibly relying upon readily available biographical information and account information to authenticate online customers.[1]Continue Reading ALERT: The FCC Fines Companies $20 Million for Failing to Safeguard Customer Proprietary Network Information

UPDATE: Following recent approval from the Office of Management and Budget (“OMB”), the Commission has announced that January 22, 2024 will be the filing deadline of the one-time collection of foreign ownership information.

The FCC recently adopted two items that underscore the Commission’s growing role in a quickly evolving national security regulatory framework: an Order and Notice of Proposed Rulemaking overhauling the regulatory framework for Section 214 authorization holders and applicants, as well as an “Enforcement Advisory” reminding operators of the risks of not disclosing certain transactions to the Commission.Continue Reading Don’t Look Twice, It’s Alright — The FCC Pulls Back the Curtain on Section 214 Authorizations

On November 30, 2022, the Federal Communications Commission (“Commission”) released a draft Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (“Draft NPRM”) that, if adopted, will seek comment on comprehensive changes to the Part 25 satellite and earth station licensing rules for the first time since 2015.[1] The Draft NPRM represents a significant step in the Commission’s efforts to facilitate innovation in the satellite industry, proposing changes that would facilitate greater expediency, flexibility, and curability in the licensing process. Continue Reading ALERT: Space Innovation Comes to Part 25 as the FCC Proposes New Reforms for its Satellite and Earth Station Licensing Rules

On November 3, 2022, Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”) Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel announced plans to reorganize the International Bureau into a new Space Bureau and a standalone Office of International Affairs. The changes are intended to help ensure FCC resources are aligned to meet the needs of FCC licensees and regulatees by “elevat[ing] the significance of satellite programs and policy within the agency to a level that reflects the importance of the emerging space economy.” Continue Reading ALERT: FCC Chairwoman Rosenworcel Announces Plans to Create a Space Bureau