AT&T Statement Regarding
Open Internet Legislation

Posted by: AT&T Blog Team on September 30, 2010 at 2:01 pm

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

“After months of hard work, we were pleased to reach an agreement with Chairmen Waxman and Boucher on compromise legislation that would ensure the openness of the Internet while protecting investment – all without new, intrusive FCC regulation. While we are disappointed that it was not possible to introduce a bill with bipartisan support, we are mindful that these issues are important and complex, and that there was insufficient time to consider and act on our efforts. We are pleased that ranking members Barton and Stearns remain open to Congressional action on this issue, and pledge to work closely with them toward that end.

“This agreement demonstrates that when all parties act in good faith, and resist extreme voices, it is indeed possible to find a reasonable middle ground on the net neutrality issue.  We remain convinced that the proper course is for Congress to decide the scope of authority it wishes the FCC to have in this area. And we remain equally convinced that the regulatory overreach being urged on the FCC by some is a major mistake that would adversely impact jobs and investment, and would likely be overturned in court.”

Read More

AT&T Statement on the Equal Access
To 21st Century Communications Act

Posted by: AT&T Blog Team on September 29, 2010 at 2:35 pm

Background: Last night, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Senate version of the Equal Access to 21st Century Communications Act. The following statement may be attributed to Tim McKone, AT&T Executive Vice President of Federal Relations:

“AT&T is pleased with the passage of the Equal Access to 21st Century Communications Act, which will greatly enhance the lives of people with disabilities by increasing access to advanced technologies and services.  We applaud Senator Pryor and Congressman Markey for shepherding this critical legislation through Congress.

“AT&T works closely with and supports the disability community on several fronts, including through the AT&T Advisory Panel on Access & Aging and through our efforts to promote the application of universal design principles in the development of new communications services.”

Read More

It Takes a Village

Posted by: Chris Boyer on September 27, 2010 at 3:52 pm

Cybersecurity.  Cyberwarfare.  Cyber criminals. The words alone are unnerving and the issues they raise are challenging and deeply complex.  I’ve been working in this area for a while now and I’m still amazed by its ever-changing landscape.  Protecting our nation’s networks is critical and a top priority for network operators as well as regulators and lawmakers.  But the entire Internet ecosystem – and that includes applications, devices and users – play integral roles in effective cybersecurity.  Indeed, it takes a village.

As we approach Cybersecurity Awareness Month, you’ll be hearing a great deal more about the issue, from the government, industry, consumer groups and others.

At AT&T, cybersecurity is something we think about 24/7.  So, I thought today that I would highlight recent comments we filed on the matter with both the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).  I’ll try not to get too far in the weeds but I want to draw attention to some important issues policymakers are grappling with and the potential effects they could have in this very sensitive area.

We agree with the cyber attack finding in this IBM report that the primary vulnerabilities occur at the software, application, device and user layers. And according to a study conducted by Verizon, 87% of data breaches were considered avoidable through the use of reasonable controls.

Cyber criminals are increasingly exploiting user carelessness and naïveté.  One of the top ten security threat trends for 2010 identified by Symantec was the use of social engineering.  Attackers are going directly after the end user and attempting to trick them into downloading malware or divulging sensitive information.  And the challenges are complicated by the evolving nature of cyber threats.  

Read More

AT&T Statement on FCC’s
E911 Location Accuracy Order

Posted by: Margaret Boles on September 23, 2010 at 1:29 pm

Washington, D.C. – The FCC today adopted an order that establishes performance benchmarks and an implementation schedule for wireless carriers when providing enhanced 9-1-1 (E911) location accuracy at the county level, instead of the current network-wide metric.  In addition, the Commission released a further notice of proposed rulemaking and notice of inquiry to address various next generation 9-1-1 (NG911) issues. The following statement may be attributed to Joan Marsh, AT&T Vice President-Federal Regulatory:

“AT&T commends the FCC for developing effective wireless E911 performance and reporting requirements that will greatly benefit the public. Today’s order, which is the result of close collaboration between the wireless industry, public safety and the FCC, marks an important step forward in bringing federal regulations up to speed with advancements in technology and enabling first responders to receive more meaningful location information during emergencies. It is through these types of collaborative efforts that progress is made to continually improve public safety.”

Read More

AT&T Statement On
Broadband for America Poll

Posted by: Michael Balmoris on September 23, 2010 at 12:50 pm

Today, Broadband for America released a survey that found that more than 75 percent of respondents agree that the Internet is currently working, and more than 55 percent oppose federal government regulation of the Internet. The following statement may be attributed to Jim Cicconi, AT&T Senior Executive Vice President of External and Legislative Affairs:

“This poll demonstrates once again what most everyone involved with the net neutrality issue already knows—that despite the fear-mongering of a few fringe groups, the American people overwhelmingly reject the idea of government regulation in the Internet space.  Tellingly, even the few who do want more government oversight are worried about very different things—identity theft, pornography, spam and malware.   The rest, by huge margins, feel the Internet is working well and reject government involvement.

“We should keep this hard data in mind when we see the increasingly juvenile tactics of Free Press and others.  Waffles and intimidation are hardly the ingredients of intelligent debate.  But with public opinion so clearly stacked against them, I suppose one understands why groups like Free Press prefer regulatory fiat to the idea of Congress addressing the net neutrality issue.  They know that, if put to the test—a true test of public sentiment through the peoples’ elected representatives—their agenda will be rejected overwhelmingly.”

Read More