FCC: Sharing outage reports with State-Local-Other Government Agencies

I missed this in the announcement of the FCC's February meeting agenda next week.

In the early 2000's (after 9/11), the FCC ruled that outage reports were "presumptively confidential." Personnally, I think the real reason was a specific carrier used the outage reporting in its sales/marketing, which upset the other carriers. They complained to the FCC about the "misuse" of outage reports for several years from the late 1990's. Yes, I was one of those people that used to visit the FCC Public Reading Room to read the outage report filings, before things were on-line.

At its February commission meeting, the FCC proposes to change its information sharing rules for outage reports to allow sharing with the States, District of Columbia, Tribal nations, territories and other federal government agencies.


- Propose to provide direct, read-only access to NORS and DIRS filings to qualified agencies of the 50 states, the District of Columbia, Tribal nations, territories, and federal government.

- Propose to allow these agencies to share NORS and DIRS information with other public safety officials that reasonably require NORS and DIRS information to prepare for and respond to disasters.

- Propose to allow participating agencies to publicly disclose NORS or DIRS filing information that is aggregated and anonymized across at least four service providers.

- Propose to condition a participating agency´┐Żs direct access to NORS and DIRS filings on their agreement to treat the filings as confidential and not disclose them absent a finding by the Commission that allows them to do so.

- Propose to establish an application process that would grant agencies access to NORS and DIRS after those agencies certify to certain requirements related to maintaining confidentiality of the data and the
security of the databases.