USTELECOM Association News

FCC moves toward combating robocalls

USTelecom dailyLead® | Mar 24, 2017

On Thursday, the Federal Communications Commission took an important step toward combating robocalls. The agency's proposal will explore ways to make it easier for telecommunications carriers to block robocalls, including spoofed calls, which fake the caller ID number to hide a caller's real identity. "Customers are justifiably frustrated with annoying robocalls. Our members are waging a daily battle to stop scammers from using these calls to reach subscribers and this will be a valuable tool to protect our customers. Through the industry-led Robocall Strike Force, broadband providers are taking a holistic approach to this fight with assistance from a broad range of stakeholders," said USTelecom CEO Jonathan Spalter. Learn more.

Broadband overtakes cable/satellite as leading conduit for video

USTelecom dailyLead® | Mar 23, 2017

For the first time, broadband has caught up with pay-TV services as a leading delivery channel for video entertainment. More telling is that streaming services, which rely on broadband connections, are up 5% over 2014, while the pay-TV trend points down, declining by 2%. Three leading streaming services -- Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hulu -- are now found in 64% of US households, and half of all adults stream programming for these services on a monthly basis, according to the On-Demand TV study conducted by the Leichtman Research Group. Learn more.

Consumers prefer broadband streaming to pay-TV

USTelecom dailyLead® | Mar 22, 2017

Significant numbers of broadband homeowners are going without pay-TV and new data says that their cord cutting trend accelerated significantly in 2016. The balance is now in favor of broadband. Almost a quarter of 100 million broadband homes (22%) in the US have little or no usage of cable, satellite or telco TV, according to research company, The Diffusion Group (TDG). Five years ago in 2011, just 9% of the 85 million US broadband-equipped homes reported being cord "nils." Learn more.

The perils of passwords

USTelecom dailyLead® | Mar 21, 2017

More than half of all Americans express concern about the security of their data, but too many use the internet equivalent of putting the front door key under the welcome mat when protecting their digital assets. The list of poor practices includes: using an overly simple password, using the same password for all sites, sticking to an out-of-date smartphone app with missing security patches or signing on to an unsecured public Wi-Fi network when performing sensitive transactions. Since the password is the key that unlocks your sensitive accounts, experts recommend several key password practices to protect sensitive and personal information on the internet. Learn more.

Hi-tech devices rely on home fixed broadband

USTelecom dailyLead® | Mar 20, 2017

No matter what the connected device -- PCs, mobile devices, gaming consoles or over-the-top boxes -- streaming movies, TV shows and all other forms of audio and video generate the largest share of traffic on a home's fixed broadband network. Referred to as "home roaming," this common practice of connecting to the home's Wi-Fi network helps make iOS and Android devices the most significant generator of traffic for fixed-access broadband services in North American homes. Learn more.

Encouraging women to enter tech fields

USTelecom dailyLead® | Mar 17, 2017

The US tech economy faces a critical shortage of talent and continues to fail to draw women to the ranks. Women may account for 47% of the workforce, but they hold only 24% of the US computing jobs, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Not only do schools and industry need to encourage more women to consider tech careers, companies must address the pay disparity between men and women. According to the tech recruitment platform Hired, women in the tech industry are offered starting salaries that are 8% lower than salaries offered to men. Learn more.

Secure smart homes, safe broadband networks

USTelecom dailyLead® | Mar 16, 2017

Securing the internet of things (IoT) from hackers and cyber crooks needs to be a top concern for manufacturers, consumers and broadband network providers. Forty percent of consumers reported having experienced a privacy or security problem with a connected device in the past year, according to a Parks Associates report. Yet, in the rush to cash in on the smart home boom, many IoT devices do not encrypt their communications or use a form of encrypted transport that is vulnerable to attack. Consumers don't realize they need to strengthen weak default passwords and download software updates once their smart device is online. Learn more.

Broadband First: Investing in America's Infrastructure

USTelecom dailyLead® | Mar 15, 2017

ICYMI: In January, USTelecom hosted a riveting summit focused on the path forward for broadband infrastructure investment and policy. Participants included members of President Donald Trump's transition team, broadband innovators and leading policy experts. With President Donald Trump's "America's Infrastructure First" policy calling for $1 trillion in new investment to improve the nation's infrastructure, broadband will play a critical role in connecting our citizens, communities. Watch the video.

March 16 webcast: Fighting Robocalls and Spoofing

USTelecom dailyLead® | Mar 14, 2017

We are all aware of the ongoing problems with robocalls and caller ID spoofing in the network. Last year the industry-led Strike Force delivered a report to the Federal Communications Commission on various efforts that are being undertaken to address the issue. On Thursday, March 16 at 1 p.m. Eastern time, USTelecom and the SIP Forum will conduct a webcast discussing the SHAKEN and STIR Frameworks. These frameworks and corresponding protocols will eventually allow participating service providers to authenticate call originations, apply certificates to validated phone calls and aid in the fight against caller ID spoofing and malicious robocalls. Learn more.

Smart cities need broadband investment

USTelecom dailyLead® | Mar 13, 2017

Making cities smart for all residents requires high-speed broadband connections for every household. Broadband companies have invested $76 billion alone in 2015 in the US infrastructure, and over $1.5 trillion since 1996. Smart city numbers are increasing due to these investments, which help to build the fiber used for innovative broadband networks that link together the Internet of Things. There will be nearly 100 smart cities around the world by 2025, according to IHS Technology. Louisville, a pioneer of smart cities, is making great headway to help its citizens by using its connective broadband network. Learn more.

NTIA BroadbandUSA webinar -- March 15

USTelecom dailyLead® | Mar 09, 2017

BroadbandUSA presents "Practical Broadband Conversations: Overview of Federal Funding for Your Broadband Needs," a webinar next Wednesday, March 15 at 2 p.m. Eastern time. This webinar will provide an overview of the federal programs that provide funding for broadband planning, infrastructure deployment, research, public computer access and digital literacy programs. BroadbandUSA will help guide you to the appropriate federal programs for your needs and identify the necessary processes to apply for funding. Register today.

The interconnected world of IoT ecosystems

USTelecom dailyLead® | Mar 08, 2017

Internet of things devices have only begun gaining in popularity over the past few years, but they're already helping consumers, businesses and government to better communicate, record or analyze data. According to a report by Business Insider, there will be 34 billion internet-connected devices by 2020, of which 24 million are expected to be IoT devices. Some analysts predict there will be as many as 100 billion connected devices online by 2025 with an economic impact of $11 trillion globally. Learn more.

Women entering the tech startup boardroom

USTelecom dailyLead® | Mar 07, 2017

Convincing the predominantly male leadership at tech startups and companies that there is a deep and accessible pool of female executive talent ready and able to fill half of the seats on their boards of directors may prove to be a challenge. Seventy percent of the US tech companies included in the 2017 survey of startups by Silicon Valley Bank do not have a woman on their board of directors, and 54% of the startups admitted there were no women in their C-suite positions. However, more women are joining the ranks of tech boardrooms. Learn more.

Let's get more fiber to America's Heartland

USTelecom dailyLead® | Mar 03, 2017

In a @MorningConsult op-ed this week, Big Bend Telephone Executive Russell Moore called for more broadband infrastructure investment for all Americans, especially in the parts of rural America with no access to services. The broadband industry is urging Congress to build a simple roadmap to truly deliver on the promise of universal connectivity for all Americans, one that leverages programs that are working, removes regulatory barriers, and channels investment to places where services don't yet exist, added Moore. Learn more.

Save the internet, skip Title II

USTelecom dailyLead® | Mar 02, 2017

Americans have always enjoyed an open internet -- long before regulators decided they had to "save the internet" by turning it into a utility, USTelecom President and CEO Jonathan Spalter wrote in an op-ed for Axios. The application of "retro" Title II rules to the modern internet "is the policy equivalent of using a sledgehammer to deal with a mosquito on your arm," Spalter said. "Technically, it may get the job done. But everything breaks in the process." There is a better, cleaner and more straightforward path to the outcome we all want to achieve. Learn more.

A road map for broadband infrastructure investments

USTelecom dailyLead® | Mar 01, 2017

As Congress begins discussing the possibility of making improvements to the nation's infrastructure, there is growing support to include broadband as a core part of new funding and incentive programs. In a joint op-ed published in The Hill, USTelecom and NTCA -- the Rural Broadband Association propose a simple roadmap to get more broadband in rural areas. Learn more.

Joint association letter to congressional leaders on broadband infrastructure

USTelecom dailyLead® | Feb 28, 2017

This week, four telecom industry trade associations partnered to write a joint letter to congressional leaders to encourage government support of investment in broadband infrastructure. Representing more than a thousand broadband service providers which bring high-speed internet service to millions of rural consumers and businesses, ITTA, NTCA, WTA and USTelecom voiced the importance of delivering affordable broadband services and upgrading existing networks for better connections and faster speeds. Critical broadband infrastructure has been and will continue to help improve Americans' collective well-being, offering benefits and capabilities such as telemedicine, educating children, promoting public safety and managing energy. Learn more.

March 2 webcast: A Linebacker's Guide to Cybersecurity

USTelecom dailyLead® | Feb 27, 2017

When football transitioned from a run-oriented game to passing, defenses were forced to change strategies. Today's cyber criminals continually change tactics, but many businesses still rely on traditional defenses (firewalls, anti-virus, encryption) -- and the headlines show who's winning! Join Dynetics and USTelecom this Thursday, March 2 at 1 p.m. Eastern time, for an informative webcast that will discuss the changing nature of cyber risks. Receive recommendations for creating effective defensive strategies that maximize existing investments and ensure success against today's cyberthreats. Register today.

FCC orders set path for increased broadband investment

USTelecom dailyLead® | Feb 24, 2017

This week, the Federal Communications Commission approved orders that would facilitate buildout of rural broadband, modernize broadband provider accounting rules, and temporarily waive enhanced transparency reporting requirements for small broadband providers with 250,000 or fewer subscribers. "Today's adoption of the auction order is an important step toward expanding broadband infrastructure in rural America and connecting more people to the internet. We look forward to working with the commission on remaining auction requirements to reach a speedy and successful result," said USTelecom President & CEO Jonathan Spalter. Learn more.

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