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ACA Supports CTIA’s Request That FCC Not Overstep Its Authority In Imposing New Privacy Requirements

PITTSBURGH, October 8, 2015 -  ACA President and CEO Matthew M. Polka issued the following statement supporting CTIA - The Wireless Association's petition asking the Federal Communications Commission to abide by its authority and not adopt new privacy requirements that have no statutory basis: 

"Over the past decades, Congress and the states have fashioned elaborate privacy and data security protections that apply to ACA member companies.  Cable service providers have been subject to a robust federal privacy regime since enactment of the 1984 Cable Act.  Telecommunications carriers have had to follow the requirements of Section 222 of the Communications Act to protect their customers' proprietary network information since 1996.  Accordingly, ACA members are well-aware that the government has a valuable role to play in protecting the privacy of customer personal information.  However, any additional government-imposed privacy regime needs to emanate from Congress and state legislatures.  For that reason, ACA filed comments in support of CTIA's Petition for Partial Reconsideration to overturn a narrow portion of the FCC's Lifeline reform order.  In adopting this order, the FCC unfortunately overstepped its authority and sought to impose on telecommunications carriers an obligation to protect the confidentiality of customer information that far exceeds the boundaries set by Congress and long recognized by the FCC.  Neither Section 222 nor any other part of the statute gives the FCC an open-ended mandate to protect customer privacy or data security practices.  It is important that the FCC observe the limits set by Congress and that Congress take the lead in establishing any additional federally mandated privacy protections."

About the American Cable Association: Based in Pittsburgh, the American Cable Association is a trade organization representing nearly 850 smaller and medium-sized, independent cable companies who provide broadband services for nearly 7 million cable subscribers primarily located in rural and smaller suburban markets across America.  Through active participation in the regulatory and legislative process in Washington, D.C., ACA's members work together to advance the interests of their customers and ensure the future competitiveness and viability of their business.  For more information, visit http://www.americancable.org/

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