Authored By Jim Bugel, AT&T Assistant Vice President, Public Safety and Homeland Security

BugelAs we continue to sift through the details of the FCC’s 300-plus page National Broadband Plan, one clear theme that stands out is the Commission’s commitment to address cybersecurity.  As more and more consumers gain access to broadband and incorporate it in their daily lives and as more and more applications in areas such as education and healthcare seek to realize broadband’s full potential, cybersecurity will become an even more important aspect of telecommunications policy.

Cybersecurity is an extremely complex challenge with many and varied dimensions.  It involves policy and social issues, as well as the ever-changing technology and architecture of the global digital infrastructure.   It involves not only our own networks for which we are responsible but the many varieties of end users’ devices and the applications and software consumers and businesses use, the access points that connect these devices to the global infrastructure, protocols which permit communication between applications and devices, and the content people want to post or access.

For AT&T, cybersecurity is a responsibility we take with extreme seriousness every second of every day.  Like our competitors, we have put in place robust systems within our core network infrastructure designed to detect and mitigate cyber attacks against our infrastructure and to tackle emerging threats.   We offer an extensive set of managed security services to our business and government customers, and we look to expand this capability to serve individual consumers as well. 

This is an integral part of our strategy to provide secure, reliable, and resilient networking capabilities and on-demand applications and content via any access medium to our customers.  Network intelligence and network management are key to cybersecurity, and AT&T continually builds security into the network to protect our business and secure our customers.

Cybersecurity is also an integral part of our efforts to ensure the privacy of our customers – and this imperative will only grow in the future, as national initiatives such as the automation of healthcare records will reinforce the critical necessity of strong cybersecurity to protect personal information from unauthorized disclosure and assure its integrity.

Protecting critical infrastructure and ensuring that our customers have access to secure and reliable information, applications and services is a top priority for AT&T.  We commend the Commission for making it a top priority for the country, and we look forward to working with them to address this critical issue.

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