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Wireless News Aggregation

Friday — December 2, 2016 — Issue No. 734


Wishing a safe and happy weekend for all readers of The Wireless Messaging News.

I have included an article about the iPhone Calendar Spam. I have received one or two of these. So far, they are not harmful—just an irritation.

Friends don’t let friends buy fake Apple chargers

An astonishing 99% of fake Apple chargers sold are unsafe, standards body warns

Computerworld | Dec 2, 2016 4:39 AM PT

You had one job...I only asked you to recharge the smartphone!
Credit: Jed Scattergood/Flickr

Don’t buy or use fake Apple device chargers as an astonishing 99 percent of them are unsafe and their use puts you at risk, a global safety body warns today.

Danger warning

In tests conducted by Illinois-based firm UL and commissioned by the UK Trading Standards organization, all but three of 400 fake chargers sold as being made by Apple failed basic safety tests.

These fakes are dangerous.

“During a recent operation investigators bought 400 counterfeit Apple chargers from suppliers around the world, online, and found that 397 of them failed a basic safety test,” the organization warned.

It found them likely to cause electric shock or burst into flames if exposed to high voltage, typical in a power surge.

Fake as sold

The warning emerges just weeks since Apple filed suit against Mobile Star for manufacturing fake chargers sold through Amazon.

Apple purchased and tested over 100 Lightning cables and chargers marked “Fulfilled by Amazon” across nine months. It found 90 percent of them were fake (even though one was sold through Amazon as “original”).

“Unlike genuine Apple products, they are not subjected to industry-standard consumer safety testing and are poorly constructed with inferior or missing components, flawed design, and inadequate electrical insulation,” Apple told the court. (I still wish Apple would make a wider selection of chargers/cables.)

Way back in 2014, Ken Shirriff tore down a bunch of fake chargers to compare these with the originals. He found that Apple’s chargers used better components, were better built, and had more electrical insulation crammed inside than cheap and unsafe fakes. His post is still an essential read if you want to understand why these things are dangerous.

Explosive situation

There have been multiple claims of incendiary iPhones since Samsung utterly failed customers by inadequate testing of the batteries used in its life-threatening Galaxy Note 7 devices. This is an equivalence that does not exist.

Apple investigates these reports, so it does seem incredibly revealing that the first step it took while investigating them was to launch litigation against makers of fake charging devices. It would be easy to speculate that fake charging devices are the primary cause of those rarely reported iPhone explosions.

Lord Toby Harris, chair of National Trading Standards, said: “Criminals across the globe are using online platforms to lure you in with cheap deals for fake items, many of which are dangerous and have been known to overheat and cause house fires."

Complicated lives

Modern life is complicated, and the devices we use are also complex. A cable is not just “a cable”, it is a complex product that may contain small quantities of RAM, a processor and more.

Charging devices contain similar complexities and should be built to handle quite complex power management tasks. This means that when you buy a cheap non-branded power adaptor you are taking a big risk: that's made even worse when you purchase a fake adaptor that is being sold as being the genuine article.

How to buy legitimate devices

What can you do to ensure you aren’t using a fake charging device?

Purchasing advice

  • Always purchase charging devices from the manufacturer of the device you wish to charge, if possible.
  • When purchasing an Apple charger check for the signs of counterfeiting such as mistakes in brand names or logos.
  • Check that plugs carry appropriate safety warnings and are correctly spelt.
  • It may help to compare charging devices and cables you are thinking about purchasing to those you know to be genuine.
  • If you do purchase a charger from vendors who are not the manufacturer, be wary of deals that are too good to be true and read reviews of the seller before you make a purchase
  • More advice on buying these things.

Usage advice

  • Never use a charger that is damaged
  • Never use a damaged cable
  • Be careful that pins on the plug fit securely without using excessive force.
  • Never cover a device that is being charged
  • Unplug your chargers when not in use

These cheap chargers may cost a little less, but the cost in damage to you or your devices may be immense.


I guess we all have character defects. My big one is procrastination—and I hate doing “paper work.”

So my immediate goal is to get caught up with invoicing for all of these wonderful newsletter advertisements by the end of this month. Anyone wanting to renew their ad prior to receiving an invoice can do so via the following PayPal link. Not everyone requires an invoice for payment.

Of course donations to help keep the newsletter going are welcome too. Helpout if you can.

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Now on to more news and views.


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About Us

A new issue of the Wireless Messaging Newsletter is posted on the web each week. A notification goes out by e-mail to subscribers on most Fridays around noon central US time. The notification message has a link to the actual newsletter on the web. That way it doesn’t fill up your incoming e-mail account.

There is no charge for subscription and there are no membership restrictions. Readers are a very select group of wireless industry professionals, and include the senior managers of many of the world’s major Paging and Wireless Messaging companies. There is an even mix of operations managers, marketing people, and engineers — so I try to include items of interest to all three groups. It’s all about staying up-to-date with business trends and technology.

I regularly get readers’ comments, so this newsletter has become a community forum for the Paging, and Wireless Messaging communities. You are welcome to contribute your ideas and opinions. Unless otherwise requested, all correspondence addressed to me is subject to publication in the newsletter and on my web site. I am very careful to protect the anonymity of those who request it.

I spend the whole week searching the Internet for news that I think may be of interest to you — so you won’t have to. This newsletter is an aggregator — a service that aggregates news from other news sources. You can help our community by sharing any interesting news that you find.

Editorial Policy

Editorial Opinion pieces present only the opinions of the author. They do not necessarily reflect the views of any of advertisers or supporters. This newsletter is independent of any trade association.



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If you would like to subscribe to the newsletter just fill in the blanks in the form above, and then click on the “Subscribe” button.

There is no charge for subscription and there are no membership restrictions. It’s all about staying up-to-date with business trends and technology.

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The Wireless Messaging News
Board of Advisors

Frank McNeill
Founder & CEO
Communications Specialists
Jim Nelson
President & CEO
Prism Systems International
Kevin D. McFarland, MSCIS
Sr. Application Systems Analyst
Medical Center
Paul Lauttamus, President
Lauttamus Communications & Security
R.H. (Ron) Mercer
Wireless Consultant
Barry Kanne
Paging Industry Veteran
Ira Wiesenfeld, P.E.
Consulting Engineer
Allan Angus
Consulting Engineer

The Board of Advisor members are people with whom I have developed a special rapport, and have met personally. They are not obligated to support the newsletter in any way, except with advice, and maybe an occasional letter to the editor.

Advertiser Index

Critical Alert
Easy Solutions
Hark Technologies
Ira Wiesenfeld & Associates a/k/a IWA Technical Services
Leavitt Communications
Preferred Wireless
Prism Paging
Product Support Services — (PSSI)
Paging & Wireless Network Planners LLC — (Ron Mercer)
RF Demand Solutions
WaveWare Technologies

Stop the iPhone Calendar Spam

Spammers are now targeting Apple iCloud calendars, but you can protect yourself while Apple works on a fix

Dec. 2, 2016 9:38 a.m. ET
The Wall Street Journal


Been receiving spam calendar invites? WSJ's Joanna Stern has got some tips to help put an end to them.
Photo/video: Drew Evans/The Wall Street Journal

Clear your schedule, because next Thursday you have an all-day appointment for “$19.99 Ray-Ban Sunglasses.”

No idea what I’m talking about? Consider yourself lucky.

Over the past month or so, iPhone owners using Apple’s iCloud calendar have been the target of spam attacks. Spammers send invites that are automatically added to calendars, so you get a blaring notification at 9 a.m. informing you that a 50%-off Ugg boot sale is about to start. (It’s fake, guys.)

The spammers are exploiting what is supposed to be a convenience feature for iPhone users: When someone schedules a real actual meeting, it automatically shows up on your calendar.

Don’t worry, your iCloud account hasn’t been compromised or hacked. This is just like email spam, except there is no special folder for it to be dumped in since Apple doesn’t have a calendar filtering or blocking system in place.

“We are sorry that some of our users are receiving spam calendar invitations,” an Apple spokesman said. “We are actively working to address this issue by identifying and blocking suspicious senders and spam in the invites being sent.”

Until the Apple fix is ready, there are some things you can do to prevent these pesky notifications.

Tip 1: Don’t decline the invite

Duh, I’ll just hit “decline” on the invite. Nope, not a good idea. Declining can notify the spammer that your account is active, meaning you could end up with even more annoying fake appointments in the future. Just ignore the invite.

Tip 2: Turn off iCloud calendar if you don’t use it

It took receiving a Ray-Ban sale invitation for me to realize I even had an active iCloud calendar account. I rely on Google for my calendar. If you do the same, or use Microsoft Exchange, Outlook or Yahoo calendars, turn off Apple’s iCloud calendar. On your iPhone, head to Settings > iCloud, then switch off Calendar.

Tip 3: Send iCloud calendar invites to e-mail

If you’re an iCloud calendar user, you can opt to send invites to your email instead. This will prevent them from automatically being added to your calendar. Visit in your browser. Select Calendar then click the gear icon in the bottom left corner. Click Preferences then the Advanced tab, then head down to invitations and click “Email to [your email address].”

Remember, though, the next time you get an invite, you’ll have to manually add it to your calendar. Also remember: There is no such thing as $20 Ray-Bans.


The Wall Street Journal





Be sure your infrastructure is up and running with the ProTek Flex Site Monitor from PageTek.

ProTek Flex—reliable, adaptable, expandable, affordable—and no surprises.


WaveWare Technologies

Enhancing Mobile Alert Response
2630 National Dr., Garland, TX 75041

New Products

OMNI Messaging Server

  • Combines Nurse Call Monitoring and Browser Based Messaging
  • Combines Radio Paging with Smartphone and E-mail Integration
  • Embedded System with 2 RS-232 Ports and Ethernet
  • Browser Based Messaging and Configuration
  • Smartphone Alert Notification Using Low-Latency Communication Protocols
  • TAP, COMP2, Scope, WaveWare, SNPP, PET and SIP Input Protocols
  • PIN Based Routing to Multiple Remote Paging Systems
  • 2W, 5W Radio Paging

MARS (Mobile Alert Response System)

  • Combines Paging Protocol Monitoring and Wireless Sensor Monitoring (Inovonics and Bluetooth LE)
  • Improves Mobile Response Team Productivity using Smartphone App
  • Low-Latency Alerts using Pagers, Smartphones, Corridor Lights, Digital Displays and Annunciation Panels
  • Automated E-mail Based Alert Response and System Status Reports
  • Linux Based Embedded System with Ethernet and USB Ports
  • Browser Based Configuration

STG (SIP to TAP Gateway)

  • Monitors SIP protocol (engineered for Rauland Responder V nurse call)
  • Outputs TAP protocol to Ethernet and Serial Port Paging Systems
  • Linux Based Embedded System
  • Browser Based Configuration

WaveWare Technologies


A Problem

The Motorola Nucleus II Paging Base Station is a great paging transmitter. The Nucleus I, however, had some problems.

One of the best features of this product was its modular construction. Most of the Nucleus' component parts were in plug-in modules that were field replaceable making maintenance much easier.

One issue was (and still is) that two of the modules had to always be kept together. They are called the “matched pair.”

Motorola used some tricks to keep people in the field from trying to match unmatched pairs, and force them to send SCM and Exciter modules back to the factory for calibrating them with precision laboratory equipment.

The serial numbers have to match in the Nucleus programing software or you can't transmit. Specifically the 4-level alignment ID parameter contained in the SCM has to match the Exciter ID parameter.

Even if someone could modify the programing software to “fudge” these parameters, that would not let them use unmatched modules effectively without recalibrating them to exact factory specifications.

So now that there is no longer a Motorola factory laboratory to send them to, what do we do?

I hope someone can help us resolve this serious problem for users of the Nucleus paging transmitter.

Please let me know if you can help. [ click here ]

Easy Solutions

easy solutions

Easy Solutions provides cost effective computer and wireless solutions at affordable prices. We can help in most any situation with your communications systems. We have many years of experience and a vast network of resources to support the industry, your system and an ever changing completive landscape.

  • We treat our customers like family. We don’t just fix problems . . . We recommend and implement better cost-effective solutions.
  • We are not just another vendor . . . We are a part of your team. All the advantages of high priced full time employment without the cost.
  • We are not in the Technical Services business . . . We are in the Customer Satisfaction business.

Experts in Paging Infrastructure

  • Glenayre, Motorola, Unipage, etc.
  • Excellent Service Contracts
  • Full Service—Beyond Factory Support
  • Contracts for Glenayre and other Systems starting at $100
  • Making systems More Reliable and MORE PROFITABLE for over 30 years.

Please see our web site for exciting solutions designed specifically for the Wireless Industry. We also maintain a diagnostic lab and provide important repair and replacement parts services for Motorola and Glenayre equipment. Call or e-mail us for more information.

Easy Solutions
3220 San Simeon Way
Plano, Texas 75023

Vaughan Bowden
Telephone: 972-898-1119

Easy Solutions

Apple Says iPhone 6s Shutdowns Result of Manufacturing Issue Causing Batteries to Degrade Faster

Friday December 2, 2016 8:37 am PST by Joe Rossignol

Apple has posted a message on its Chinese website to address unexpected battery shutdowns affecting some iPhone 6s models, noting the issue is related to some batteries having been overexposed to "controlled ambient air" during the manufacturing process (via Business Insider).

“We found that a small number of iPhone 6s devices made in September and October 2015 contained a battery component that was exposed to controlled ambient air longer than it should have been before being assembled into battery packs. As a result, these batteries degrade faster than a normal battery and cause unexpected shutdowns to occur. It's important to note, this is not a safety issue.”

Apple added that iPhones are designed to shut down automatically under certain conditions, such as extremely cold temperature. In this case, some iPhone 6s models are shutting down with around 30% battery percentage remaining to protect the device's internal components from low voltage.

Apple said it has investigated other factors that could potentially cause an iPhone to shut down unexpectedly, but it has not identified any new factors. Nevertheless, the company said it will continue to monitor and analyze customer reports. Apple reiterated the battery issues are not a safety concern.

Apple launched a repair program earlier this month offering free battery replacements for affected iPhone 6s models. These devices fall within a limited serial number range manufactured between September 2015 and October 2015. Apple has since launched a tool to check if your serial number is affected.

Apple is also offering refunds to customers who previously paid to have their eligible iPhone 6s battery repaired or replaced. Apple recommends customers experiencing iPhone 6s battery issues visit an Apple Store or an Apple Authorized Service Provider, or contact Apple Support.

Source: MacRumors

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BlackBerry appoints former U.S. Coast Guard CIO to lead Federal Cybersecurity Operations Center

BY BLA1ZE Thursday, Dec 1, 2016 at 7:42 am EST

BlackBerry has announced they have named Rear Admiral Robert "Bob" E. Day, Jr., U.S. Coast Guard (Ret.) to lead their forthcoming federal Cybersecurity Operations Center (CSOC) and product FedRAMP initiatives. Having been a key member of BlackBerry's AtHoc advisory board since retiring in 2014 and serving five years as Chief Information Officer (CIO) and Commander of Coast Guard Cyber Command, Rear Admiral Day brings 34-years of career experience in Federal information technology and cybersecurity to the position.

“Bob Day has proven himself to be an invaluable asset to BlackBerry,” said Iain Kennedy, Chief Information Officer for BlackBerry. “His knowledge of cybersecurity at the strategic and operations levels within military and civilian agency environments will help us develop and provide new FedRAMP certified cloud deployments of our products. We are honored that he is coming aboard full time to guide FedRAMP certification of our full product suite used today by many Federal agencies.”

FedRAMP is a U.S. government-wide program that provides a standardized approach to security assessment, authorization, and continuous monitoring for cloud products and services used by federal agencies. FedRAMP's "do once, use many times" framework saves an estimated 30 to 40 percent of government costs while reducing the time and staff size required to conduct previously redundant agency security assessments.

Source: CrackBerry

Prism Paging

Product Support Services, Inc.

Repair and Refurbishment Services

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Product Support Services, Inc.

511 South Royal Lane
Coppell, Texas 75019
(972) 462-3970 Ext. 261 left arrow left arrow

PSSI is the industry leader in reverse logistics, our services include depot repair, product returns management, RMA and RTV management, product audit, test, refurbishment, re-kitting and value recovery.

RF Demand Solutions

Codan Paging Transmitters

  • The smart choice for Critical Messaging
  • Proven performance in extreme conditions
  • Trusted by the World's largest mission critical security, military, & humanitarian agencies

Flexible Modern Design:

  • Analog & Digital
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  • Integrates with Motorola & Glenayre Simulcast
  • Compatible with most popular Controllers


Time to Upgrade?

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Your US Distributor for Codan Radio Paging Equipment
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Nearly one million Android phones infected by hackers

by Jose Pagliery @Jose_Pagliery
November 30, 2016: 7:29 PM ET

Once again, hackers are showing why you should never, ever download apps outside official app stores.
Hackers have gained access to more than 1.3 million Google accounts — emails, photos, documents and more — by infecting Android phones through illegitimate apps.

That discovery comes from computer researchers at Check Point, a cybersecurity firm. On Wednesday, Google confirmed to CNNMoney the nature and extent of the problem.

The hackers have managed to steal digital "tokens" that give them access to Google services, like a person's email and photo collection. But according to Google, hackers have not yet tapped that information and stolen it.

The massive hack appears to be a criminal enrichment scheme.

Infected Android smartphones begin to install other, legitimate Android apps — then rate them highly. This fraudulently inflates their reputation, according to Check Point researchers.

Google has already removed the legitimate apps from its official store that have benefited from this ratings conspiracy, according to a blog post by Adrian Ludwig, the company's director of Android security.

The malware also installs malicious advertising software that tracks users, a potential boon for data-hungry marketers.

Google says it has blocked 150,000 versions of this kind of nasty cyberattack.

But the problem persists. Another 13,000 devices are getting infected and breached daily, according to Check Point researchers who have been tracking this type of cyberattack since last year. They've nicknamed the hacking campaign "Gooligan."

Check Point has set up a website — — for people to check if their devices have been hacked. (It requires you to enter your Google email address, gives you a response, and offers the company's "ZoneAlarm" product.)

Alternatively, Android users could check to see if they have downloaded illegitimate versions of any of the apps listed at the bottom of this article.

Smartphone owners are advised to only download certified computer programs from official repositories. Google has its Google Play store. Apple has its App Store.

But some people insist on visiting unofficial app stores — typically on shady websites — because they offer free, counterfeit versions of popular apps.

"Not surprisingly, a malware, spread in unofficial markets, can create real damage," said Zuk Avraham, the founder of another cybersecurity firm, Zimperium.

On Tuesday, Google stressed that users should avoid downloading outside of Google Play.

According to Check Point, here's the list of potentially infected apps:

  1. Perfect Cleaner
  2. Demo
  3. WiFi Enhancer
  4. Snake
  5. gla.pev.zvh
  6. Html5 Games
  7. Demm
  8. memory booster
  9. แข่งรถสุดโหด
  10. StopWatch
  11. Clear
  12. ballSmove_004
  13. Flashlight Free
  14. memory booste
  15. Touch Beauty
  16. Demoad
  17. Small Blue Point
  18. Battery Monitor
  19. 清理大师
  20. UC Mini
  21. Shadow Crush
  22. Sex Photo
  23. 小白点
  24. tub.ajy.ics
  25. Hip Good
  26. Memory Booster
  27. phone booster
  28. SettingService
  29. Wifi Master
  30. Fruit Slots
  31. System Booster
  32. Dircet Browser
  34. Puzzle Bubble-Pet Paradise
  35. GPS
  36. Light Browser
  37. Clean Master
  38. YouTube Downloader
  39. KXService
  40. Best Wallpapers
  41. Smart Touch
  42. Light Advanced
  43. SmartFolder
  44. youtubeplayer
  45. Beautiful Alarm
  46. PronClub
  47. Detecting instrument
  48. Calculator
  49. GPS Speed
  50. Fast Cleaner
  51. Blue Point
  52. CakeSweety
  53. Pedometer
  54. Compass Lite
  55. Fingerprint unlock
  56. PornClub
  57. com.browser.provider
  58. Assistive Touch
  59. Sex Cademy
  60. OneKeyLock
  61. Wifi Speed Pro
  62. Minibooster
  64. com.fabullacop.loudcallernameringtone
  65. Kiss Browser
  66. Weather
  67. Chrono Marker
  68. Slots Mania
  69. Multifunction Flashlight
  70. So Hot
  71. Google
  72. HotH5Games
  73. Swamm Browser
  74. Billiards
  75. TcashDemo
  76. Sexy hot wallpaper
  77. Wifi Accelerate
  78. Simple Calculator
  79. Daily Racing
  80. Talking Tom 3
  81. com.example.ddeo
  82. Test
  83. Hot Photo
  84. QPlay
  85. Virtual
  86. Music Cloud

CNNMoney (New York)
First published November 30, 2016: 7:29 PM ET

Source: CNNMoney

Leavitt Communications


Specialists in sales and service of equipment from these leading manufacturers, as well as other two-way radio and paging products:

UNICATIONbendix king

motorola blue Motorola SOLUTIONS

COMmotorola red Motorola MOBILITY spacer
Philip C. Leavitt
Leavitt Communications
7508 N. Red Ledge Drive
Paradise Valley, AZ 85253
Web Site:
Mobile phone:847-494-0000
Skype ID:pcleavitt


Disaster-Proven Paging for Public Safety

Paging system designs in the United States typically use a voice radio-style infrastructure. These systems are primarily designed for outdoor mobile coverage with modest indoor coverage. Before Narrowbanding, coverage wasn’t good, but what they have now is not acceptable! The high power, high tower approach also makes the system vulnerable. If one base station fails, a large area loses their paging service immediately!

Almost every technology went from analog to digital except fire paging. So it’s time to think about digital paging! The Disaster-Proven Paging Solution (DiCal) from Swissphone offers improved coverage, higher reliability and flexibility beyond anything that traditional analog or digital paging systems can provide. 

Swissphone is the No. 1 supplier for digital paging solutions worldwide. The Swiss company has built paging networks for public safety organizations all over the world. Swissphone has more than 1 million pagers in the field running for years and years due to their renowned high quality.

DiCal is the digital paging system developed and manufactured by Swissphone. It is designed to meet the specific needs of public safety organizations. Fire and EMS rely on these types of networks to improve incident response time. DiCal systems are designed and engineered to provide maximum indoor paging coverage across an entire county. In a disaster situation, when one or several connections in a simulcast solution are disrupted or interrupted, the radio network automatically switches to fall back operating mode. Full functionality is preserved at all times. This new system is the next level of what we know as “Simulcast Paging” here in the U.S.

Swissphone offers high-quality pagers, very robust and waterproof. Swissphone offers the best sensitivity in the industry, and battery autonomy of up to three months. First responder may choose between a smart s.QUAD pager, which is able to connect with a smartphone and the Hurricane DUO pager, the only digital pager who offers text-to-voice functionality.

Bluetooth technology makes it possible to connect the s.QUAD with a compatible smartphone, and ultimately with various s.ONE software solutions from Swissphone. Thanks to Bluetooth pairing, the s.QUAD combines the reliability of an independent paging system with the benefits of commercial cellular network. Dispatched team members can respond back to the call, directly from the pager. The alert message is sent to the pager via paging and cellular at the same time. This hybrid solution makes the alert faster and more secure. Paging ensures alerting even if the commercial network fails or is overloaded.

Swissphone sets new standards in paging:

Paging Network

  • It’s much faster to send individual and stacked pages digitally than with analog voice.
  • If you want better indoor coverage, you put sites closer together at lower heights.
  • A self-healing system that also remains reliable in various disaster situations.
  • Place base station where you need them, without the usage of an expensive backhaul network.
  • Protect victim confidentiality and prevent unauthorized use of public safety communications, with integrated encryption service.


  • Reliable message reception, thanks to the best sensitivity in the industry.
  • Ruggedized and waterproof, IP67 and 6 1/2-feet drop test-certified products.
  • Battery autonomy of up to three months, with a standard AA battery.
  • Bluetooth enables the new s.QUAD pager to respond back to the dispatch center or fire chief.


  • Two-way CAD interfaces will make dispatching much easier.
  • The new s.ONE solution enables the dispatcher or fire chiefs to view the availability of relief forces.
  • A graphical screen shows how many of the dispatched team members have responded to the call.

Swissphone provides a proven solution at an affordable cost. Do you want to learn more?
Visit: or call 800-596-1914.

Researchers Break Apple's iPhone and iPad Activation Lock

Observing, pondering, and writing about tech. Generally in that order.
Opinions expressed by Forbes Contributors are their own.

DEC 1, 2016 @ 05:08 PM

A lock is only good at protecting things if it actually stays locked. The activation lock in iOS, for example, makes it very hard for someone other than the owner to wipe an iPhone or iPad and set it up as a new device. Very hard, but not impossible.

Image: Pexels

Two different bugs have recently been discovered that could allow someone to bypass Apple's activation lock. One impacts devices running iOS 10.1 and another on the most current version of the software, iOS 10.1.1.

The first was found by Hemanth Joseph, a security researcher who works out of Kerala, India. Joseph's workaround exploited a weakness in the iOS device setup process, and he tested it on a locked iPad he purchased from eBay. When asked to choose a WiFi network, he simply chose 'other network' and then proceeded to fill its name and a WPA2-enterprise key in with thousands of characters. His thought was that enough data in those fields would cause the device to freeze, and he was right.

After figuring out how to freeze the iPad, he began to work on a way to make the setup process fail and drop him on the home screen. Pressing the sleep/wake button merely restarted the wizard, but with a little help from the magnetic catch in Apple's Smart Cover and some practice to perfect the timing, Joseph succeeded. He demonstrated the bypass in a video uploaded to Google Drive.

Researchers at Vulnerability Lab discovered the iOS 10.1.1 bug. Like Joseph, the team began by overloading the WiFi setup fields and employed a smart cover. There's one minor difference: they rotate the device in their video demo to display the home screen.

In both cases, the home screen only appears for an instant and then it's gone. Vulnerability Labs founder Benjamin Kunz-Mejri told Security Week that pressing the sleep/wake button quickly allowed his team to keep it open. The danger, of course, is that a criminal who can replicate the attack could wipe a stolen iPhone or iPad and set it up as a new device. It's not clear from the videos, however, whether the home screen that appeared is fully functional and it's even possible to access the reset screen.

The bug discovered by Joseph was reportedly fixed in an iOS update on November 16. The second appears to be unpatched, though that could change with the arrival of iOS 10.2 which is currently being beta tested.

In both cases, the home screen only appears for an instant and then it's gone. Vulnerability Labs founder Benjamin Kunz-Mejri told Security Week that pressing the sleep/wake button quickly allowed his team to keep it open. The danger, of course, is that a criminal who can replicate the attack could wipe a stolen iPhone or iPad and set it up as a new device. It's not clear from the videos, however, whether the home screen that appeared is fully functional and it's even possible to access the reset screen.

The bug discovered by Joseph was reportedly fixed in an iOS update on November 16. The second appears to be unpatched, though that could change with the arrival of iOS 10.2 which is currently being beta tested.


Leavitt Communications

its stil here

It’s still here — the tried and true Motorola Alphamate 250. Now owned, supported, and available from Leavitt Communications. Call us for new or reconditioned units, parts, manuals, and repairs.

We also offer refurbished Alphamate 250s, Alphamate IIs, the original Alphamate and new and refurbished pagers, pager repairs, pager parts and accessories. We are FULL SERVICE in Paging!

E-mail Phil Leavitt ( ) for pricing and delivery information or for a list of other available paging and two-way related equipment.

black line

Phil Leavitt

leavitt logo

7508 N. Red Ledge Drive
Paradise Valley, AZ 85253

Friday, December 2, 2016   Volume 4 | Issue 235

Pare Down or Dismantle the FCC: Trump Advisors Debate

We’re learning more about how the members of President-elect Donald Trump’s advisors view the FCC. Commission team leader Jeffrey Eisenach, who’s also a candidate to become the next chairman, thinks the agency needs to be dismantled. His colleague, former Sprint lobbyist Mark Jamison, believes the Commission needs to have its role diminished. “Most of the original motivations for having an FCC have gone away,” he wrote in an October blog post, reports Techdirt.

Jamison doesn’t believe telecom monopolies are an issue, writing: “A well-functioning Federal Trade Commission, in conjunction with state authorities, can handle consumer protection and anticompetitive conduct issues.”

Even the FCC itself is trying to weed out unnecessary rules, however Jamison is proposing to eliminate the agency altogether. “What would we do without an FCC? Any legitimate universal service concerns could be handled by others: States can subsidize network access as they see fit, the Department of Health and Human Services can incorporate telecommunications and internet into its assistance to low-income households, and the FTC and states can handle consumer protection and ex post regulation,” he wrote.

Roslyn Layton has been added to the FCC transition team, Inside Towers reported. Like Eisenach and Jamison, Layton is a visiting fellow at the conservative think tank American Enterprise Institute and shares similar telecom regulation views.

Swiss global financial services firm UBS sent a note to investors with predictions about how a Trump administration may change the telecom landscape, reports Android Headlines. UBS thinks the FCC and FTC will be more lenient in regulating the wireless sector, noting that both Commissioner Ajit Pai, who Inside Towers has reported will likely be named interim chairman, and Eisenach have both advocated for paring down the Commission’s jurisdiction.

Source: Inside Towers 

Hark Technologies

hark logo

Wireless Communication Solutions

USB Paging Encoder

paging encoder

  • Single channel up to eight zones
  • Connects to Linux computer via USB
  • Programmable timeouts and batch sizes
  • Supports 2-tone, 5/6-tone, POCSAG 512/1200/2400, GOLAY
  • Supports Tone Only, Voice, Numeric, and Alphanumeric
  • PURC or direct connect
  • Pictured version mounts in 5.25" drive bay
  • Other mounting options available
  • Available as a daughter board for our embedded Internet Paging Terminal (IPT)

Paging Data Receiver (PDR)


  • Frequency agile—only one receiver to stock
  • USB or RS-232 interface
  • Two contact closures
  • End-user programmable w/o requiring special hardware
  • 16 capcodes
  • Eight contact closure version also available
  • Product customization available

Other products

Please see our web site for other products including Internet Messaging Gateways, Unified Messaging Servers, test equipment, and Paging Terminals.

Hark Technologies
717 Old Trolley Rd Ste 6 #163
Summerville, SC 29485
Tel: 843-821-6888
Fax: 843-821-6894
E-mail: left arrow CLICK
Web: left arrow CLICK

Hark Technologies

Preferred Wireless

preferred logo

Terminals & Controllers:
8ASC1500 Complete, w/Spares
3CNET Platinum Controllers
2GL3100 RF Director
1GL3000 ES — 2 Chassis — Configurable
1GL3000 L — 2 Cabinets, complete working, w/spares
35SkyData 8466 B Receivers
10Zetron M66 Transmitter Controllers
2Glenayre Complete GPS Kits
3Motorola 10W, 900 MHz Link TX (C35JZB6106)
Link Transmitters:
7Glenayre QT4201 25W Midband Link TX
3Motorola 10W, 900 MHz Link TX (C35JZB6106)
1Motorola Q2630A, 30W, UHF Link TX
 Coming soon, QT-5994 & QT-6994 900MHz Link TX
VHF Paging Transmitters:
7Motorola Nucleus 125W CNET
3Motorola Nucleus 350W CNET
7Motorola Nucleus 350W NAC
14Motorola Nucleus 125W NAC
1Glenayre QT7505
1Glenayre QT8505
3Glenayre QT-100C
UHF Paging Transmitters:
15Glenayre UHF GLT5340, 125W, DSP Exciter
900 MHz Paging Transmitters:
2Glenayre GLT8200, 25W (NEW)
5Glenayre GLT-8500 250W
4Glenayre GLT 8600, 500W
23Motorola Nucleus II 300W CNET
Miscellaneous Parts:
 Nucleus Power Supplies
 Nucleus NAC Boards
 Nucleus NIU, Matched Pairs
 Nucleus GPS Reference Modules
 Nucleus GPS Receivers
 Nucleus Chassis
 Glenayre 8500, PAs, PSs, DSP Exciters
 Glenayre VHF DSP Exciters
 Glenayre GL Terminal Cards
 Zetron 2000 Terminal Cards
 Unipage Terminal Cards


Too Much To List • Call or E-Mail

Rick McMichael
Preferred Wireless, Inc.
Telephone: 888-429-4171
(If you are calling from outside of the USA, please use: 314-575-8425) left arrow

Preferred Wireless

Critical Alert

spacer cas logo

Critical Alert Systems, Inc.

Formed in 2010, CAS brought together the resources and capabilities of two leading critical messaging solutions providers, UCOM™ and Teletouch™ Paging, along with lntego Systems™, a pioneer in next-generation nurse call systems. The result was an organization that represented more than 40 years of combined experience serving hospitals and healthcare providers.

CAS was created to be a single-source provider for hospitals and healthcare facilities in need of advanced nurse call and communications technologies.

Unlike our competitors, our product development process embraced the power of software from its inception. This enables us to design hardware-agnostic solutions focused on built-in integration, flexibility and advanced performance.


Nurse Call Solutions

Innovative, software-based nurse call solutions for acute and long-term care organizations.


Paging Solutions

To this day, for critical messaging, nothing beats paging. It’s simply the best way to deliver a critical message.



© Copyright 2015 - Critical Alert Systems, Inc.

BloostonLaw Newsletter

Selected portions of the BloostonLaw Telecom Update, and/or the BloostonLaw Private Users Update — newsletters from the Law Offices of Blooston, Mordkofsky, Dickens, Duffy & Prendergast, LLP — are reproduced in this section with the firm’s permission.

BloostonLaw Telecom Update Vol. 19, No. 44 November 30, 2016

REMINDER: CAF BLS Buildout Methodology Selection Due December 5

All carriers less than 80 percent deployed with 10/1 broadband service are required to select a methodology for calculating deployment obligations and inform the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) by December 5th, 2016. Each carrier can choose to have its deployment obligation determined by one of two methods: the applicable CAF-BLS amount divided by (1) the average cost of providing 10/1 Mbps service, based on the weighted average cost per loop of carriers that have deployed 10/1 Mbps service to 95 percent or more of the locations in their study area, or 150 percent of the weighted average cost per loop of companies with similar density and level of deployment, whichever is greater, or (2) the Alternative Connect America Cost Model’s calculation of the cost per location of providing 10/1 Mbps service in the unserved census blocks in the carrier’s study area.

Specifics on the deployment obligation under each method for each study area are available at: Carriers with questions should contact the firm without delay.

BloostonLaw Contacts: Ben Dickens, Gerry Duffy, Mary Sisak, and Sal Taillefer.


FCC Provides Guidance on Lifeline Modernization Forbearance Election

On November 22, the FCC’s Wireline Competition Bureau issued a Public Notice offering guidance on the process to invoke forbearance from the requirement that Eligible Telecommunications Carriers (ETCs) must offer broadband Internet access service (BIAS) as a Lifeline-supported service, where applicable. To elect forbearance relief, Lifeline-only ETCs and eligible high-cost recipients must submit forbearance notifications to the FCC by December 2.

Among other things, the following information must be included in the forbearance notifications:

  • Carrier and ETC Designation Information. The name of the ETC and any associated d/b/a, as well as the applicable ETC designation order, designating authority, type of designation (e.g., Lifeline-only ETC) and date of the ETC designation for each area where the ETC is seeking forbearance relief.
  • Identification of the Areas in which the ETC Seeks Forbearance. ETCs should provide EITHER an Excel file listing the Census recognized geographic areas (e.g., Census blocks, Census block groups, Census tracts, Counties) and associated Federal Information Processing Standards (FIPS) Code where (a) the ETC is availing itself of forbearance relief, or (b) the ETC will offer BIAS pursuant to the Lifeline obligation OR a shapefile indicating the Census recognized geographic areas, as specified above, where (a) the ETC is availing itself of forbearance relief, or (b) the ETC will offer BIAS pursuant to the Lifeline obligation.
  • Date and Reason for Change. A forbearance notification by an ETC availing itself of forbearance relief based on a qualifying change in the ETC’s high-cost support for a specific area must identify the date and reason for the change.

As we reported in a previous edition of the BloostonLaw Telecom Update, in the most recent Lifeline Modernization Order, in which the FCC deemed BIAS to be a Lifeline-supported service, Lifeline-only ETCs are allowed to request forbearance from the obligation to offer Lifeline-supported BIAS anywhere in their designated service areas, and high-cost recipients may request forbearance in areas where they are not receiving high-cost support or are not subject to high-cost public interest broadband obligations. In its Public Notice, the Bureau further clarified:

ETCs subject to rate-of-return regulation are not currently eligible to file forbearance from the Lifeline BIAS obligation because such ETCs have the high-cost public interest obligation to offer BIAS with speeds of at least 4/1 Mbps upon reasonable request throughout their service areas pursuant to the USF/ICC Transformation Order. However, the obligation to offer Lifeline BIAS is not triggered for a particular location until the rate-of-return carrier offers Internet access service at speeds of at least 4/1 Mbps to that location.

Carriers with questions about the forbearance options, or interested in obtaining assistance with the election should contact the firm as soon as possible.

BloostonLaw Contacts: Ben Dickens, Gerry Duffy, Mary Sisak, and Sal Taillefer.

USAC Provides Initial Details on New Deployment Data Reporting System

On November 28, the Universal Service Administrative Program (USAC) announced that, starting in 2017, carriers participating in the new Connect America programs must file deployment data with USAC’s HUBB (High Cost Universal Broadband) portal showing where they are building out mass-market, high-speed Internet service by precise location. According to the release, this information will include latitude and longitude coordinates for every location where service is available, and will eventually be displayed on a public-facing map. USAC indicates that the HUBB will be available and ready to accept deployment data in early 2017, in time for a March 1 filing deadline.

To help the industry prepare, USAC is publishing Geolocation Methods: A guide to successfully collecting broadband deployment data. This document reportedly provides an overview of three main methods for gathering geo-located deployment data, along with the pros and cons of each approach. Carriers may use any method—or combination of methods—that enables them to gather the correct geographic coordinates for the locations they serve or could serve.

USAC has also launched a data validator tool that enables carriers to check the accuracy of their geo-located broadband deployment data before officially submitting it to the portal. The data validator identifies records that would be accepted by the HUBB and flags any records that contain issues that may first need to be corrected. The tool checks for errors such as missing data fields, improper formatting, faulty latitude or longitude coordinates, and locations in areas that are not eligible for support from certain funds. USAC indicates that the validator does not store any data, and encourages carriers to use this tool to prepare their data now so that they will be ready to file when the HUBB goes live in early 2017.

BloostonLaw is available to assist clients in preparing their data submissions and navigating USAC’s new system.

BloostonLaw Contacts: Gerry Duffy, and Sal Taillefer.

REMINDER: CAF BLS 15-Day Tariff Filings Due December 19

On October 6, the FCC released an Order establishing procedures for the filing of access charge tariffs and Tariff Review Plans (TRPs) for incumbent local exchange carriers (LECs) subject to rate-of-return regulation (rate-of-return LECs) that elect to offer broadband-only loop service beginning January 3, 2017, whether on a tariffed or detariffed basis. This includes rate-of-return LECs subject to either section 61.38 or section 61.39 of the Commission’s rules, whether they elect model-based support or Connect America Fund Broadband Loop Support (CAF BLS). 15-day tariff filings are due by December 19.

BloostonLaw Contacts: Ben Dickens, Gerry Duffy, and Mary Sisak.

Deadlines Established for Technology Transitions Petitions for Reconsideration

On November 23, the FCC published notice of the Petitions for Reconsideration filed by NTIA, and jointly by NASUCA, the Maine Office of the Public Advocate, the Maryland Office of the People’s Counsel, and the Utility Reform Network. Oppositions are due December 8, and responses to oppositions are due December 19.

Readers will recall that the Technology Transitions Order updated the FCC’s review and notice procedures governing the filing and processing of section 214 applications to discontinue, reduce or impair service.

NTIA argued in its pleading that the FCC should (1) clarify whether, if at all, or under what circumstances, services such as T1 and Integrated Service Digital Network (ISDN) fall within the meaning of “legacy voice service”; (2) reconsider its interoperability protection requirement to define a list of “low speed modems” and create a presumption that devices that use such modems are entitled to interoperability protection; (3) prescribe limited testing requirements for small carriers; and (4) use its “public interest” review of carriers’ section 214 discontinuance applications to promote greater information exchange and more cooperative planning between carriers and their federal customers about network transitions, to reduce the potential impact such transitions may have on critical government operations.

In their filing, NASUCA, et al., argued that the “technical guidance” in Appendix B of the Voice Replacement Order is inconsistent with the FCC’s rules, and does not achieve the Commission’s objective that technology transitions result in consumers receiving service with comparable service quality and performance to that provided over the Public Switched Telephone Network. Specifically, NASUCA et al argued that the technical guidance “does not recognize that the PSTN is an end-to-end-experience” and “presumes that the replacement service is an over-the-top (“OTT”) service, rather than a managed-VoIP service such as is offered by cable-based providers or incumbent ILECs.”

BloostonLaw Contacts: Ben Dickens, Gerry Duffy, Mary Sisak, and Sal Taillefer.

Law & Regulation

FCC Announces Tentative Agenda for December Open Meeting

On November 22, the FCC announced that the following items are tentatively on the agenda for the Open
Meeting scheduled to take place on December 15:

  • a Report and Order and Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to help achieve the transition from TTY technology to a reliable and interoperable means of providing real-time text communication over wireless Internet protocol-enabled networks and services. (CG Docket No. 16-145, GN Docket No. 15- 178).
  • a Report and Order and Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to enhance the Emergency Alert System (EAS) as a tool for community emergency preparedness. The Report and Order improves alerting organization at the state and local levels, builds stronger community-based alerting exercise programs, and protects the EAS against accidental misuse and malicious intrusion. The Further Notice seeks comment on proposals to leverage technological advances to improve alerting and additional measures to preserve EAS security. (PS Docket No. 15-94)

As usual, the Open Meeting is scheduled to commence at 10:30 a.m., and will be webcast live at

BloostonLaw Contacts: Ben Dickens, Gerry Duffy, and John Prendergast.

Senator Thune Asks FCC Not to Consider Controversial Items

By letter dated November 15, Senator John Thune (R-S.D.), Chairman of the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee, “strongly urge[d]” FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler “to avoid directing [the FCC’s] attention and resources in the coming months to complex, partisan, or otherwise controversial items that the new Congress and new Administration will have an interest in reviewing.” According to Sen. Thune, “[a]ny action taken by the FCC following November 8, 2016, will receive particular scrutiny.” A similar letter was sent by Representatives Walden and Upton, and the FCC subsequently deleted all of the items on the agenda for its November 17 Open Meeting.

BloostonLaw Contacts: Ben Dickens, and Gerry Duffy.


Trump Taps Yet Another Net Neutrality Critic for FCC Transition

The Hill is reporting that the Trump transition team announced on Tuesday that Roslyn Layton will join the FCC landing team. Like Jeffrey Eisenach and Mark Jamison, the other individuals heading the transition, Ms. Layton has served as a visiting fellow at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) and is a vocal critic of the FCC’s Net Neutrality (a.k.a. Open Internet) rules. According to her website, her other credentials include Ph.D. fellowships at Denmark’s Industrial Ph.D. Program and the Aalborg University Center for Communication, Media, and Information Technologies. She is also the Vice President at Strand Consult.

Ms. Layton recently published a blog post outlining what she sees to be the digital trade priorities for the next administration at Tech Policy Daily.


JANUARY 17: HAC REPORTING DEADLINE. The next Hearing Aid Compatible (HAC) reporting deadline for digital commercial mobile radio service (CMRS) providers (including carriers that provide service using AWS-1 spectrum and resellers of cellular, broadband PCS and/or AWS services) is Tuesday, January 17, 2017 (by operation of FCC rules, the Sunday, January 15th date is pushed to the next business day and Monday the 16th is the Martin Luther King Day federal holiday). Non-Tier I service providers must offer to consumers at least 50 percent of the handset models per air interface, or a minimum of ten handset models per air interface, that meet or exceed the M3 rating, and at least one-third of the handset models per air interface, or a minimum of ten handset models per air interface, that meet or exceed the T3 rating. Month-to-month handset offering information provided in annual reports must be current through the end of 2016. With many of our clients adjusting their handset offerings and making new devices available to customers throughout the year, it is very easy for even the most diligent carriers to stumble unknowingly into a noncompliance situation, resulting in fines starting at $15,000 for each HAC-enabled handset they are deficient. Following the T-Mobile USA Notice of Apparent Liability (FCC 12-39), the Commission’s enforcement policy calls for multiplying the $15,000 per-handset fine by the number of months of the deficiency, creating the potential for very steep fines. It is therefore crucial that our clients pay close attention to their HAC regulatory compliance, and monthly checks are strongly recommended. In this regard, we have prepared a HAC reporting template to assist our clients in keeping track of their HAC handset offerings, and other regulatory compliance efforts. ALL SERVICE PROVIDERS SUBJECT TO THE COMMISSION’S HAC RULES — INCLUDING COMPANIES THAT QUALIFY FOR THE DE MINIMIS EXCEPTION — MUST PARTICIPATE IN ANNUAL HAC REPORTING. To the extent that your company is a provider of broadband PCS, cellular and/or interconnected SMR services, if you are a CMRS reseller and/or if you have plans to provide CMRS using newly licensed (or partitioned) AWS or 700 MHz spectrum, you and your company will need to be familiar with the Commission’s revised rules.

BloostonLaw contacts: Cary Mitchell and Sal Taillefer.

FEBRUARY 1: FCC FORM 499-Q, TELECOMMUNICATIONS REPORTING WORKSHEET. All telecommunications common carriers that expect to contribute more than $10,000 to federal Universal Service Fund (USF) support mechanisms must file this quarterly form. The FCC has modified this form in light of its decision to establish interim measures for USF contribution assessments. The form contains revenue information from the prior quarter plus projections for the next quarter. Form 499-Q relates only to USF contributions. It does not relate to the cost recovery mechanisms for the Telecommunications Relay Service (TRS) Fund, the North American Numbering Plan Administration (NANPA), and the shared costs of local number portability (LNP), which are covered in the annual Form 499-A that is due April 1.

BloostonLaw contacts: Ben Dickens, Gerry Duffy, and Sal Taillefer.

FEBRUARY 1: FCC FORM 502, NUMBER UTILIZATION AND FORECAST REPORT. Any wireless or wireline carrier (including paging companies) that have received number blocks—including 100, 1,000, or 10,000 number blocks—from the North American Numbering Plan Administrator (NANPA), a Pooling Administrator, or from another carrier, must file Form 502 by February 1. Carriers porting numbers for the purpose of transferring an established customer’s service to another service provider must also report, but the carrier receiving numbers through porting does not. Resold services should also be treated like ported numbers, meaning the carrier transferring the resold service to another carrier is required to report those numbers but the carrier receiving such numbers should not report them. Reporting carriers are required to include their FCC Registration Number (FRN). Reporting carriers file utilization and forecast reports semiannually on or before February 1 for the preceding six-month reporting period ending December 31, and on or before August 1 for the preceding six-month reporting period ending June 30.

BloostonLaw Contacts: Ben Dickens, Gerry Duffy, and Sal Taillefer.

Calendar At-A-Glance

Dec. 2 – Deadline to File Notice of Forbearance Election for Lifeline Broadband Support.
Dec. 2 – Comments are due on AT&T Tariff Forbearance Petition.
Dec. 5 – Deadline to Select CAF-BLS Deployment Obligation Methodology.
Dec. 9 – Deadline for Oppositions to Technology Transition Petitions for Reconsideration.
Dec. 19 – Deadline for 15-Day Tariff Filings.
Dec. 19 – Reply comments are due on AT&T Tariff Forbearance Petition.
Dec. 19 – Deadline for Responses to Oppositions to Technology Transition Petitions for Reconsideration.
Dec. 20 – Form 323 (Biennial Ownership Report) is due.
Dec. 22 – Reply comments are due on PLMRS NPRM.
Dec. 27 – Comments are due on the Independent Programming NPRM.
Dec. 27 – Deadline for 7-Day Tariff Filings.
Dec. 27 – Deadline for Petitions re: 15-Day Tariff Filings.
Dec. 29 – Deadline for Petitions re: 7-Day Tariff Filings (noon, EST).
Dec. 30 – Deadline for Replies to Petitions re: 15-Day Tariff Filings (noon, EST).
Dec. 30 – Deadline for Replies to Petitions re: 7-Day Tariff Filings (noon, EST).

Jan. 15 – Annual Hearing Aid Compatibility Report is due.
Jan. 23 – Reply comments are due on the Independent Programming NPRM.
Jan. 31 – FCC Form 555 (Annual Lifeline ETC Certification Form) is due.

Feb. 1 – FCC Form 499-Q (Quarterly Telecommunications Reporting Worksheet) is due.
Feb. 1 – FCC Form 502 (Number Utilization and Forecast Report) is due.

BloostonLaw Private Users Update Vol. 17, No. 11 November 2016

Trump Picks Jeffrey Eisenach and Mark Jamison to Lead FCC Transition

On November 21, President-elect Donald Trump announced Jeffrey Eisenach and Mark Jamison to head the FCC’s transition from Democratic to Republican control. Eisenach is the managing director and co-chair of the communications, media and Internet practice NERA Economic Consulting, an adjunct professor at George Mason University School of Law, and director of the Center for Internet, Communications, and Technology Policy at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI). He previously worked on the Reagan and George H.W. Bush transition teams. Jamison heads the Public Utility Research Center at the University of Florida, and is a visiting fellow at AEI.

BloostonLaw Contacts: John Prendergast, Richard Rubino and Sal Taillefer.

FCC Terminates License after Competitor Squeals Non-Construction

The FCC terminated the license for 800 MHz Specialized Mobile Radio (SMR) station WQUX291 for failure to construct. While a termination of a license authorization for failure to construct is generally routine, the circumstances surrounding the license for station WQUX291 are any thing but routine.

The license for station WQUX291 was issued on November 5, 2014 with a one-year construction deadline. Just prior to the expiration of the construction period, licensee Janus Spectrum Group, LLC filed its construction notification indicating that the station had been timely constructed as of October 15, 2015. Approximately six months later, a competitor filed a complaint against Janus Spectrum and other licensees which resulted in an FCC investigation as to whether the station had actually been constructed as reported. The complaint noted that the respective licensees applied for their licenses on the same day for the same two locations and filed construction notifications reporting the same construction date. The complaint included a sworn statement indicating that a site inspection demonstrated that there were no antennas mounted on the towers at the authorized locations and height, and that no building permits had been filed with the county offices for either location.

In response to the complaint, the FCC’s Enforcement Bureau requested that Janus Spectrum provide specific information concerning the construction and operation of station WQUX291, to which Janus Spectrum did not respond. Janus Spectrum did not respond to further FCC inquiries. As a result, the FCC was persuaded that the complaint (coupled with Janus Spectrum’s failure to respond) demonstrated that the station had never been constructed.

This case is important for three reasons: First, if the licensee does not meet its construction obligation, the FCC will terminate the license, provided sufficient evidence proves the non-construction. Second, and perhaps more important, the FCC relied on circumstantial evidence based upon a sworn statement, pictures of the antenna tower and County building permit records to conclude that the station had never been constructed. Finally, if the FCC determines that false statements were made, it could take other enforcement actions, including the pursuit of criminal charges.

BloostonLaw Contacts: John Prendergast and Richard Rubino.

FCC Denies Request for Waiver to Exceed Bandwidth Limitation

James Nash — on behalf of Cedar Grove Farm — request ed a waiver of Rule Section 90.35(c)(33) to exceed the 6 kHz bandwidth limitation for the frequency 158.1225 MHz, which is adjacent to Part 22 paging channel 158.10 MHz.

Mr. Nash operates a farm with operations from Richmond, Virginia to Baltimore, Maryland. Following an upgrade to its aging VHF system, Cedar Grove Farm encountered a problem with one of its new channels. Because of its proximity to the Washington, DC area, a replacement channel was difficult to come by and Cedar Grove Farm was only able to identify the frequency 158.1225 MHz. Unfortunately, the FCC’s rules limited the authorized bandwidth to 6 kHz instead of the 12.5 kHz — which made the channel incompatible with the rest of the new VHF communications system unless a waiver was granted to allow operation with 12.5 kHz bandwidth.

In support of the waiver request, Cedar Grove Farm asserted that the proposed 12.5 kHz use would not cause harmful interference to other spectrum users. As is consistent FCC practice, the FCC sought public comment on Cedar Grove Farm’s request. In response, Pros RF stat ed that other channels were available that were not subject to the 6 kHz bandwidth limitation. However, Cedar Grove Farm argued that the frequencies identified by Pros RF were not available as a practical matter. As a result, Pros RF submitted an application for the very frequencies it said were available to Cedar Grove Farm with the parameters required by Cedar Grove Farm. The FCC granted the application and Pros RF offered to as sign any of the identified frequencies for Cedar Grove Farm’s use.

Based upon this background, the FCC denied the waiver request because (a) the frequency 158.1225 MHz is emission-limited in order to protect the lower-adjacent paging channel 158.10 MHz (which is authorized under Part 22 of the FCC’s Rules) from harmful interference and (b) Cedar Grove Farm made an insufficient showing that no frequencies were available for which no rule waiver was required. That frequencies might require special frequency coordination (such as Power coordinator concurrence) does not render a particular channel unavailable. This is because the denial of concurrence by a frequency coordinator cannot be assumed — especially since the frequency coordinator may deny concurrence “only when grant of the underlying application would have a demonstrable, material effect on safety.”

BloostonLaw Contacts: John Prendergast and Richard Rubino.

FCC Issues Consumer Alert on Utilities Call Scam

On November 15, the FCC issued a Consumer Alert urging consumers to be on the lookout for callers pretending to be utility company employees demanding immediate payment, often by prepaid debit cards, credit cards, or gift cards. Our clients may want to pass this alert on to their customers.

If consumers receive a call warning them of a balance they do not believe they owe their utility, they should hang up, independently look up their utility company’s phone number on a recent statement or legitimate web site, and call that number to verify the legitimacy of the call.

In this scam, the caller typically poses as a representative of the consumer’s actual local utility, stating that immediate payment will ensure that the consumer’s heating service will not be disconnected. The scammers are known to spoof utility company telephone numbers so the caller ID makes it appear to be a call from the utility company. These scammers often use automated interactive voice response calling systems that mimic legitimate providers’ calls. After consumers, many of whom are older adults, follow instructions via interactive prompts, they are connected to a live “customer service representative” who asks for the access code for a credit, debit, or gift card. This information allows the scammer to cash out the card or sell it to a third party.

Anyone who believes they have been targeted by this scam should immediately report the incident to their actual utility company, to local police, to the Federal Trade Commission’s Complaint Assistant, and to the FCC’s Consumer Help Center.

FCC Proposes Updates to Strengthen Wireless Emergency Alerts as a Public Safety Tool

The FCC is seeking comment on a variety of proposed revisions to Wireless Emergency Alert (WEA) rules to improve WEA, leveraging advancements in technology to improve WEA’s multimedia, multilingual and geo-targeting capabilities, as well as lessons learned from alert originators’ experience since WEA was initially de ployed. Comments on the item (FCC 16-127) are due on or before December 8, 2016 and reply comments are due on or before January 9, 2017.

As currently configured, WEAs allow local, state and federal authorities to send geo-targeted emergency warnings of no more than 90 characters through participating mobile carriers to consumers with WEA-enabled mobile devices. The FCC adopted the WEA Report and Order and Further Notice at the end of September amid pressure from lawmakers and public safety officials in the wake of recent bombings in New York and New Jersey.

The new rules propose to expand the maximum number of characters permitted in WEA messages from 90 to 360 on 4G LTE and next generation networks; to require support for embedded phone numbers and URLs in all WEA messages; to require the delivery of messages in more focused geographic areas; to require providers to support Spanish-language alerts; and to make it easier for state and local authorities to test the system, train personnel and raise public awareness of the system.

The proposed rules also create a new, fourth class of alerts — dubbed Public Safety Messages — designed to convey “essential, recommended actions that can save lives or property.” The WEA system currently allows three message types: alerts issued by the president, alerts related to imminent threats to life or safety and Amber Alerts.

Since its launch in 2012, WEA has informed the public about severe weather, missing children, and other emergencies through alerts to their wireless phones. Participation in the WEA system has been optional for wireless service providers, but many carriers have elected to participate because of the public interest benefits of making alert messages available to their customers.

“I’m particularly pleased that we were able to answer Senator Schumer’s call to expedite enhancements to the system, such as ensuring all alerts will soon be able to include embedded links, so that you will be able click to see a photo of the missing child, a suspected terrorist, a map, or to call authorities,” said FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler.

BloostonLaw Contacts: John Prendergast, Richard Rubino, and Cary Mitchell.

FirstNet Continues to Pursue Network Procurement

At the end of October, FirstNet CEO Mike Poth posted a blog article providing a short update on the FirstNet net work procurement proceeding. Although unable to share specific details, Mr. Poth stated that he is, “pleased to report that we have made significant progress in the evaluation process and are moving closer to a contract award.” He further stated that although FirstNet would miss the November 1 target date for awarding the con tract, it would continue to work diligently to execute the acquisition process outline in the Request for Proposals (RFP).

FirstNet developed and issued the RFP in January for a contract to build and manage the Nationwide Public Safety Broadband Network. Since then, it has answered several hundred questions about its content, and received and evaluated proposals from offerors. “Going forward, we remain committed to delivering the Network to the public safety community and the American public they serve as swiftly as possible,” said Mr. Poth in closing his post.

BloostonLaw Contact: John Prendergast

HobbyKing USA Cited for Illegal Marketing of Radio Frequency Devices

The FCC requires all radio frequency (RF) devices that are marketed and sold in the United States to be authorized and properly labeled with an FCC Identification Number. These rules are designed to ensure that RF devices comply with the FCC’s technical requirements and do not cause interference to authorized communications.

In this case, the FCC’s Enforcement Bureau received a complaint alleging that HobbyKing USA was marketing RF transmitters and receivers in violation of the Commission’s equipment authorization and labeling requirements. In response to an inquiry by the FCC, HobbyKing USA stated that it was a small business that “would soon be ceasing operations entirely.” Later, HobbyKing USA’s owner stated that the equipment in question was no longer being sold. In response to the information provid ed by HobbyKing USA, the FCC was able to determine that the RF equipment was neither properly certified nor labeled with the required FCC identifier. As a result, the FCC issued a citation directing HobbyKing USA to come into compliance with the FCC’s equipment authorization rules.

It is important to note that where a violator does not hold an FCC authorization, a citation serves two purposes: (a) notify an offender of a violation and (b) permit the Commission to take further enforcement action in the event the violation continues or is otherwise repeated.

BloostonLaw Contacts: John Prendergast and Richard Rubino.

FCC Seeks Comment as Part of its Tri-Annual Review of Marine Station Logging Requirement

As part of the Paperwork Reduction Act, the FCC is re quired to periodically renew its authority to collect information from the public with the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). Currently under review is the requirement for Public Coast and Ship Stations to maintain certain records pursuant to Rule Section 80.409. The FCC is proposing no changes to the current record keeping requirement. Comments are due on or before December 12, 2016.

There are several record keeping requirements that are of interest in this proceeding:

  1. Public Coast Station Logs — which are necessary to document the operation and public correspondence of public coast radio telegraph, public coast radiotelephone stations and Alaska public-fixed stations, including the logging of distress and safety calls. The logging requirement man dates entries for all work performed which may affect the proper operation of the station. Logs must be retained by the licensee for a period of two years from the date the entry is made (except for log entries involving distress calls — in which case the log must be retained for a period of three years). In situations involving an investigation or complaint, the logs must be retained indefinitely until the FCC authorizes disposal (which it will do in cases where the complaint or claim has been satisfied, or the statute of limitations has passed).
  2. Ship Radiotelegraph Logs — Logs of ship stations which are equipped for radiotelegraphy on a compulsory basis and operating in the 90 – 535 kHz band must contain the data entry elements required in Rule Section 80.409(d), which are summarized below:
    1. date and time of each incident required to be entered into the log,
    2. when each operator goes “ON WATCH” and “OFF WATCH”,
    3. during the watch, all calls and replies to and from the station,
    4. all dis tress calls, automatic-alarm signals, urgency and safety signals made or intercepted, the complete text if possible or distress messages and distress communications and any incidents or occurrences which may appear to be of importance to safety of life or property at sea,
    5. the ship’s position at least once per day,
    6. daily entry comparing radio station clock with standard time,
    7. all test transmissions and
    8. any failure of equipment to operate as required and any incidents tending to unduly delay communications.
  3. Ship Radiotelephone Logs — Logs of ship stations which are compulsory equipped for radiotelephony must contain the data entry elements required in Rule Section 80.409(e), which are summarized below:
    1. summary of all distress and urgent communications affecting the station’s ship as well as all distress alerts relayed by the ship station and all distress call acknowledgements and other communications received from search and rescue authorities,
    2. summary of safety communications on other than VHF channels,
    3. time of any inadvertent transmissions of distress, urgency and safety signals (to include time and method of cancellation),
    4. entry that pre-departure equipment checks have been satisfactorily made and that required publications are on board. Daily tests should also be recorded.
    5. daily statement about the condition of the required radiotelephone equipment,
    6. weekly entry that
      1. DSC equipment has been verified by actual communications or a test call,
      2. portable survival craft radio gear and radar transponders have been tested and
      3. EPIRBs have been inspected,
    7. Entry at least once each 30 days that batteries or other reserve power sources have been checked and are functioning properly,
    8. results of required equipment tests,
    9. results of inspections and tests of compulsorily fitted lifeboat radio equipment,
    10. when master is notified about improperly operating radiotelephone equipment,
    11. at the beginning of each watch, the officer of the Navigation al Watch or the GMDSS Operator on watch (if one is provided) shall log that appropriate actions have been taken with respect to the navigational receiver, including ensuring that the navigational receiver is functioning properly and interconnected to all GMDSS alerting devices which do not have integral navigation receivers. On ships that do not have integral or directly connected navigation receiver input to GMDSS equipment, the Officer of the Navigation Watch or GMDSS Operator on watch shall update the embedded position in each piece of equipment,
    12. an entry de scribing any malfunctioning GMDSS equipment and another entry when the equipment is repaired and returned to service,
    13. GMDSS radio log entry whenever GMDSS equipment is exchanged or replaced (ensuring that MMSI identifiers are properly updated in the replacement equipment) when major repairs to GMDSS equipment are accomplished and when annual GMDSS inspections are conducted.

Any client with concerns regarding these record keeping requirements should advise our office as soon as possible.

BloostonLaw Contacts: John Prendergast and Richard Rubino.

This newsletter is not intended to provide legal advice. Those interested in more information should contact the firm. For additional information, please contact Hal Mordkofsky at 202-828-5520 or

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“Is Paging Going Away?” by Jim Nelson

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Volunteers needed for translations into other languages.


From: Michael Candell
Subject:From The Wireless Messaging News
Date:December 1, 2016 at 6:36:17 AM CST
To:Brad Dye


I just received an e-mail about this. A 2-way TETRA pager:


Michael C. Candell — Contractor
Radio Systems Engineer / GROL, W7KBW, R56


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Kayaking in Nordegg, Canada

Nordegg is a hamlet in west-central Alberta, Canada within Clearwater County and located in the North Saskatchewan River valley in the foothills of the Canadian Rockies.

The area was originally populated for coal mining, however operations in the area ceased in 1955. Since then, Nordegg has become a popular tourist and recreation destination as it is located near numerous parks and recreation areas such as: Ram Falls Provincial Park, the Kootenay Plains Ecological Reserve, and the dozens of small campsites along the David Thompson Highway.

Nordegg is the last community on the David Thompson Highway before reaching Banff National Park to the west.

Source:  TwistedSifterPhotograph by Kalen Emsley on Unsplash

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