FCC Commissioner Rosenworcel to Senate: US Lacks Comprehensive 5G Plan

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Federal Communications Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel looked to throw a scare into the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee about the country's 5G-readiness. That came at a hearing on the national security risks, supply chain security, an promise of 5G.

Committee Chairman Ron Johnson (R-WI) said at the hearing that he had a briefing and subsequent call with Larry Kudlow, director of the National Economic Council, Oct 30 and now was confident the council was taking the lead on the 5G issue, with the "involvement" of FCC Chairman Ajit Pai and President Donald Trump and that the Administration had a handle on the problem. Christopher Krebs, director of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency at the US Department of Security, also signaled the Administration has been hard at work on 5G supply chain security "for years," and that there was a nationwide strategy that was "Really coming together" under the guidance of the National Economic Council and the National Security Council. He said while there is no Department of 5G or Department of Supply Chain Security, "nor should there be, I can say with confidence that the United States is collaborating effectively across agencies and with our industry partners."

Commissioner Rosenworcel said that the US "does not have a comprehensive national plan in place with a fully coordinated interagency response" given that the Defense Innovation Board, which advises the US military, issued the warning that "the country that owns 5G will own innovations and set the standards for the rest of the world," and "that country is currently not likely to be the United States." Commissioner Rosenworcel had some ideas for such a comprehensive national plan: 1) Secure the supply chain; 2. recognize that securing the US supply will only go so far because "no network stands alone," so it was important to virtualize 5G networks so they resided in the cloud, a space the US dominates; 3. smarter spectrum policy (auction more midband); and 4. secure the internet of things.

FCC's Rosenworcel to Senate: U.S. Lacks Comprehensive 5G Plan Rosenworcel Testimony, Senate Homeland Security & Governmental Affairs