Going Global: Benefits of Trade

Posted by: AT&T Blog Team on February 25, 2014 at 4:07 pm

By Jake E. Jennings, AT&T Executive Director of International External and Regulatory Affairs

Currently, the U.S. is negotiating three trade agreements – the Trans-Pacific Partnership, the Trade in Services Agreement and the Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership. When completed, American businesses and workers will gain more open access to two-thirds of the world economy.

Last week, the Obama administration laid out a compelling case for its ambitious trade agenda during a speech by United States Trade Representative Michael Froman at the Center for American Progress. Ambassador Froman did an excellent job of clearly articulating how trade agreements will drive economic growth, boost labor and environmental protections.

He noted trade agreements:

• create new opportunities through increased market access;

• give U.S. companies the ability to sell products and services in those countries just as foreign companies can do so today without the agreements; and

• level the playing field by raising standards and values on everything from environment, labor and e-commerce.

Ambassador Froman also highlighted that cross-border collaboration and data exchange will drive tomorrow’s innovations.

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TOPICS: International
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AT&T Statement on ‘911’
Location Accuracy

Posted by: AT&T Blog Team on February 20, 2014 at 3:00 pm

The following statement may be attributed to an AT&T spokesperson:

“AT&T fully supports the FCC’s goal of improving accuracy in locating ‘911’ wireless callers in both outdoor and indoor locations.  Unfortunately, the Commission has tentatively proposed unrealistic targets for location accuracy indoors.  Indeed, the recent FCC CSRIC Report shows that no vendor currently has proven technology that can meet the proposed standards.  We remain committed to working with the Commission and the public safety community to craft a realistic, effective solution that takes the greatest advantage of existing technology to ensure consumers can rely on ‘911’ no matter where they are or what service they use.”

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AT&T Statement on Net Neutrality

Posted by: AT&T Blog Team on February 19, 2014 at 12:42 pm

The following may be attributed to Jim Cicconi, AT&T Senior Executive Vice President of External and Legislative Affairs:

“AT&T has built its broadband business, both wired and wireless, on the principle of Internet openness.  That is what our customers rightly expect, and it is what our company will continue to deliver.  That is also why we endorsed the FCC’s original rule on net neutrality, and is why we pledged to adhere to openness principles even after the recent court decision.

“As the FCC embarks on a new proceeding to clarify its authority under section 706, we will, of course, participate constructively and in the same spirit with which we worked with the Commission on its original rule.  We believe the FCC possesses sufficient authority under section 706 to preserve Internet freedom and openness, and that it can do so without over-regulation.  Indeed, and as the court recognized, section 706 was clearly intended by Congress as a tool to enhance broadband investment and deployment.  Thus, it is vital that, as the FCC defines its authority, it do so in a way that does not inhibit the very investment section 706 was intended to assist.”


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Protecting our Nation’s
Critical Infrastructure

Posted by: AT&T Blog Team on February 12, 2014 at 1:15 pm

By Ed Amoroso, AT&T Senior Vice President and Chief Security Officer

AT&T applauds the National Institute of Standards and Technologies (NIST) on the release of its Baseline Framework to Reduce Cyber Risk to Critical Infrastructure.  President Obama’s February 2013 Executive Order directed NIST to improve our nation’s critical infrastructure cybersecurity by establishing a framework to “provide a prioritized, flexible, repeatable, performance-based, and cost-effective approach, including information security measures and controls, to help owners and operators of critical infrastructure identify, assess, and  manage cyber risk.”

While we will be reviewing the details of the Cybersecurity Framework over the coming months to see how it best complements our existing cyber-risk management program, a few things are clear now.

• First, the Cybersecurity Framework builds upon existing industry security standards and spans all 16 sectors of critical infrastructure.  Effective cybersecurity presents a complex challenge requiring collaboration from across the entire Internet ecosystem.

• Second, the Cybersecurity Framework builds in the necessary flexibility for effective implementation and continued innovation.  This flexibility is vital, as it allows organizations to adapt and evolve as the threat landscape continuously shifts.

• Third, the Cybersecurity Framework shows international leadership by demonstrating that an effective partnership between government and industry is the most effective way to combat cyber-attacks.

In that spirit, today, our CEO, Randall Stephenson, is participating in a roundtable discussion at the White House with Secretary Pritzker and other industry leaders on the Cybersecurity Framework.  We look forward to continuing our work with government and industry partners to effectively protect the nation’s critical infrastructure from existing and future cybersecurity threats.

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The FCC Decides to Lead on IP

Posted by: Jim Cicconi on January 30, 2014 at 12:26 pm

The FCC today made a bold leap forward on the path to a modern 21st Century broadband world by agreeing to oversee industry-wide geographic trials.  These trials will convert legacy Plain Old Telephone Service (POTS) networks to an all-IP broadband architecture.  While couched in the terms of telecom arcana, this decision is important and profound.  All Americans should applaud the FCC’s action, because all Americans, and generations yet unborn, will benefit from it.

When we asked the FCC to oversee these trials almost 15 months ago, we were following the path charted by the FCC’s excellent National Broadband Plan, as well as the FCC’s Technological Advisory Council (then led by current FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler).  The team who authored the National Broadband Plan and the TAC both recognized that creating a path for incumbent providers to retire legacy POTS technology was a necessary step towards achieving universal broadband connectivity in the United States.  In particular, both understood that the cost of maintaining the legacy architecture, with its rapidly declining subscriber base, was unsustainable for any company, and was pulling significant dollars away from broadband investment.  That decline has only accelerated over the past fifteen months – AT&T’s consumer POTS access lines decreased from 15.7 to 12.4 million lines between 2012 and 2013, proving the truth of the FCC’s conclusions in stark numbers.

Beginning the process for achieving this transformation is overdue, and all of us should recognize the sense of urgency Chairman Wheeler and his team have brought to this issue.  They quickly recognized and credited the leadership shown many months earlier by Commissioners Rosenworcel, Pai, and Clyburn, as well as the clear public support of Commissioner O’Rielly, to build a unanimous vote for moving forward.  This is visionary both for its break with the past, its recognition of the future, and its unanimity in a time of partisan strife.  Maybe I’ve been in this town too long, but once upon a time we all had a term for this.  We called it leadership.

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