VoIP and IP
The National Emergency Number Association (NENA) Board of Directors has formally approved the NENA Interim VoIP Architecture for Enhanced 9-1-1 Services (known in short as i2). The standard is an interim solution enabling VoIP telecommunications service providers to deliver full E9-1-1 service through the current E9-1-1 infrastructure. It is the first of a two part major E9-1-1 system re-design effort surrounding IP that was started in 2003. The standard can be viewed by clicking here. Click here to view the press release.
NENA Announces Availability of New Resource to Support FCC Compliant 9-1-1 Interconnection: The 9-1-1 System Reference Guide will serve as a single-source reference for PSAP and Selective Router administrative data. The Guide is a real-time window into NENA’s North American 9-1-1 Resource Database, previously known as the National PSAP Registry which was originally developed as a repository of contact information for PSAPs in the United States. The 9-1-1 System Reference Guide is an expansion of NENA’s existing efforts and includes critical information to assist VSPs, VPCs, and others in providing an E9-1-1 solution. For details CLICK HERE.
NENA and APCO Issue Joint Statement Regarding VoIP E9-1-1 Regulation: NENA and APCO issued a joint statement today regarding VoIP E9-1-1 Regulation. The statement addresses NENA and APCO’s understanding of several key provisions in Senate Bill S.1063, the IP-Enabled Voice Communications and Public Safety Act of 2005. The statement also reiterates both groups position that the FCC must have the authority to prevent VoIP providers from offering new service to customers in areas where the provider cannot meet current FCC requirements. Click here to read the statement. Click here to read additional statement.
The NENA Technical Committee has posted two new Technical Information Documents. The Network TID 03-503, NENA SS7Guidelines for Wireline and VoIP Emergency Services Gateway Interconnection to 9-1-1 Selective Routers and the Network TID 03-504 PSAP Call Back to All 9-1-1 Callers, Combating Wireless E911 Fraud and Mobile Emergency Service (E911M), to the NENA web site in the Technical Committee section.
Please click here to view the full documents.
FCC Enforcement Bureau Outlines Requirements of November 28, 2005 Interconnected VoIP 9-1-1 Compliance Letters: The FCC released a public notice on November 7 regarding the requirements for VoIP provider compliance letters concerning the November 28 VoIP E9-1-1 deadline. The notice indicates that VoIP providers will not be required to cut service to customers that have signed up before the 11/28 deadline and do not have an E9-1-1 solution. However, after the 11/28 deadline VoIP providers are not permitted to market or offer service to new customers in geographic areas where they do not have an E9-1-1 solution. Click here to view the FCC notice.
Senate Commerce Committee Approves the IP-Enabled Voice Communications and Public Safety Act of 2005
Provides states with the authority to enforce the FCC’s rules in this area and collect fees from VoIP providers
Provides liability protection for PSAPs, VoIP providers and users of VoIP services
Ensures that VoIP providers have access to E9-1-1 components and are treated in the same manner as wireless providers in seeking access to 9-1-1 components
Requires National 9-1-1 Implementation and Coordination Office to submit a plan to Congress on the migration towards an IP-Enabled 9-1-1 system
Provides explicit authority to FCC to set regulations concerning E9-1-1 for IP-enabled services
Does not allow service cut-off to existing customers through 12/31/2005 as long as they have notified and received acknowledgement from those customers on service limitation, but requires VoIP providers to report on their progress to provide E9-1-1 to these customers
Allows FCC to grant waivers to VoIP providers who have provided notice and received acknowledgement from customers and who can demonstrate that it is not “technically or operationally feasible” to comply with FCC requirements in the given time frame. Granting of the waiver is not mandatory and is at the discretion of the FCC
Prevents VoIP Providers, after 12/31/2005, from offering service to customers in areas where such providers cannot offer 9-1-1 or E9-1-1
NENA Files Reply Comments with FCC on VoIP E9-1-1: On September 12th NENA filed reply comments with the FCC on the VoIP E9-1-1 Order responding to comments filed by other groups in the NPRM proceeding. We also filed reply comments on September 15th in response to a clarification request filed by T-Mobile on the VoIP E9-1-1 Order.
VoIP E9-1-1 Deployment Issues Working Group Formation and Preliminary Findings: NENA has formed a fast track Working Group to address and provide guidance on some VoIP E9-1-1 deployment issues that need a national approach – initially ESQK and ESRN assignment methods. Careful consideration is being given to the advantages and disadvantages of each ESQK assignment option and of what will achieve the best balance to maintain E9-1-1 functionality, transition to full i2 compliance, potential costs and efforts on involved parties, and conservation of numbering resources. It has been preliminarily concluded by the Working Group that the best option for VoIP E9-1-1 deployment is that ESQKs pools be assigned by VPCs across all related VSPs, but likely with options to support certain E9-1-1 / PSAP functionality where utilized. More info is available by clicking on the title above.
Results from Network Tech Committee Fast Track Work Group on PSTN Access to E9-1-1: Earlier in 2005, NENA discussed the potential option of using either open PSTN or routable non-dialable PSTN number access to Selective Routers in E9-1-1 systems with the FCC, in regard to a quick, temporary means to support VoIP based 9-1-1 calls. A number of pros and cons were suggested in those discussions. As a result of the FCC VoIP E9-1-1 Order and its aggressive schedule, Roger Hixson asked the Network Technical Committee to form a fast track work group to investigate this matter in detail. The results are posted (click here for the report) on the NENA web site VoIP/IP subpage, and were passed to the FCC in NENA’s Reply Comments to the FCC VoIP E9-1-1 NPRM, dated Sept 12, 2005. In summary, the conclusion is that automatic transmission of 9-1-1 dialed calls via either open (dialable), or routable but non-dialable telephone numbers, through the general PSTN is undesirable, open to 9-1-1 call blockage, and in some ways technically unworkable.
FCC/NARUC VoIP E9-1-1 Task Force Members Announced: The FCC and NARUC announced on Sept 1, the members of the new joint federal/state VoIP Enhanced 9-1-1 Enforcement Task Force. In addition to the members, the release also states “the Task Force will actively seek input from representatives of the National Emergency Number Association (NENA), the Association of Public Safety Communications Officials (APCO), and state and local 911 authorities.” Click here to view that announcement.
NENA Files Comments with the FCC on VoIP E9-1-1 Notice of Proposed Rulemaking: On Monday, August 15th, NENA filed comments with the FCC responding to questions asked in a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) associated with the VoIP E9-1-1 Order. The comments addressed numerous issues, focusing on the fact that the FCC should continue and improve upon its directive influence in seeing that needed standards efforts for IP E9-1-1 are coordinated and completed in a timely fashion. Click here to read the complete comments.
NENA Files Joint Clarification Request with VON Coalition Concerning FCC VoIP E9-1-1 Order:On July 29, NENA and the VON Coalition jointly filed a clarification request with the FCC on questions which arose in the July 7 “VoIP E9-1-1 Solutions Summit” co-hosted by NENA and the VON Coalition. Clarification items included: what level of E9-1-1 service is required by the FCC Order when a PSAP does not have access to the dynamic data update mechanisms required for pANI based data query; that MSAG address validation is required to meet the Order requirements; whether routable and non-dialable PSTN access to Selective Routers is permissible as a temporary means where other interconnection is not available in the Order timeframe; whether use of automatic location is permissible for converged wireless (CMRS and VoIP); whether user service location can be limited by contract; and Order exceptions for new VoIP service testing and trials. Clarification of these issues is expected to provide more certainty to both the VoIP service provider community and to Public Safety as implementation of VoIP E9-1-1, as ordered by the FCC, proceeds.
Two Federal Communications Commission announcements regarding VoIP and 9-1-1 were released this week: At the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC) summer meeting in Austin, TX, FCC Chairman Kevin J. Martin announced the creation of an FCC-NARUC Task Force on VoIP Enhanced 911 (E911) enforcement. Staff from both the FCC and State Public Utility Commissions will serve as members, working closely with representatives from the public safety community, including the Association of Public Safety Communications Officials (APCO) and the National Emergency Number Association (NENA). The complete text of the announcement, including responsibilities of the new group, can be found here.
Over 100 participants from industry and the 9-1-1 community came together July 7 at the first ever “VoIP E9-1-1 Solution Summit” to discuss key issues concerning the FCC’s Order establishing E9-1-1 requirements for IP-enabled service providers. Co-hosted by NENA and the VON Coalition, the event was primarily intended for VoIP providers and their vendors to facilitate and expand an open dialogue on the actions needed to enable national solutions for VoIP E9-1-1.
FCC VoIP E9-1-1 Order Published in Federal Register: The FCC Order on VoIP E9-1-1 requirements order has been published today in the Federal Registry. This publication establishes the actual dates for the various mandates in the order.
07/29/05 — Deadline for customer notification requirements
07/29/05 — Deadline for Filing a Petition for Reconsideration
08/15/05 — NPRM comments due
08/29/05 — Deadline for filing a Petition for Review with the Court of Appeals
09/12/05 — Reply comments due
11/28/05 — 120 day deadline for compliance
NENA Issues VoIP Activity Statement of Intent: A great deal of work has already been done by the 9-1-1- community and industry on the issue of E9-1-1 for VoIP. The recent FCC Order on this issue certainly accelerates the need for solutions in this arena. There are clearly technical, operational and policy issues that need to be addressed in the very near future as VoIP service providers take steps to meet the FCC Order. NENA looks forward to continue working with all of the stakeholders, both public and private, to reach common sense solutions that satisfy the requirements of this Order while working towards a future path that meets established industry standards. This document is a statement of the activities NENA intends to pursue over the coming weeks and months to ensure collaboration and cooperation among all affected parties.
NENA and the VON Coalition are co-hosting a one-day VoIP E9-1-1 Solution Summit, July 7, in Washington, DC.It will focus on the various aspects of FCC 05-116, First Report and Order and Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, which has mandated E9-1-1 for VoIP.
FCC Order on VoIP and E9-1-1, June 3, 2005: The FCC today released the text of their VoIP and E9-1-1 Order. Click here to view the document.
Leading research universities and technology companies showcased basic features of a next-generation IP-based emergency E9-1-1 solution Thursday, May 26, at the National Press Club in Washington, DC: Attended by representatives from the US Department of Transportation/NHTSA, Department of Commerce/NTIA, Federal Communications Commission, E9-1-1 Institute, NENA, other organizations and news media, the proof-of-concept demonstration highlighted the capabilities of an Internet-based emergency call delivery system for nomadic and mobile Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) users to an IP-capable PSAP (Public Safety Answering Point).
NENA senior staff and leadership have been involved in the last few weeks in several activities concerned with present and future E9-1-1 service, ranging from VoIP and its increased regulatory visibility to presentations at various conferences. In NENA’s recent work and findings there is strong indication that the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) will take immediate action. Through NENA’s consistent leadership and advocacy on IP, Future Path, Next Generation 9-1-1 and the Network Reliability and Interoperability Council (NRIC 7), as well as the interest of the new FCC Chairman, Kevin Martin, we are anticipating proposed rules for certain aspects of near term VoIP access to E9-1-1 sometime this Spring (May 19) or shortly thereafter.
Supporting this activity and the inquiry of various federal entities, NENA senior staff have been preparing VoIP and9-1-1 position papers and informational documents as well as participating in numerous calls and meetings related to IP and E9-1-1.
Beyond the federal government, NENA’s senior staff and leadership have provided updates, presentations and participation at the VON Canada inToronto, and VoIP and 9-1-1 seminar in Vancouver, as well as various chapter, coalitions and allied partners in supporting greater leadership for E9-1-1 in VoIP.
Keeping NENA members informed of this important outreach, please see the following links:
President Bill McMurray, ENP made an informal statement about NENA’s leadership and positions on VoIP on the NENA talklist:
On May 11, 2005 NENA filed an expansion of information on near term VoIP access to E9-1-1 issues. This filing was authored by NENA’s Technical Issues Director, Roger Hixson, with the assistance of Steve Seitz and Jim Hobson.
May 11, 2005 ex parte to FCC on near term VoIP access to E9-1-1 systems
May 9-10 ex parte (00109240.DOC;1)
April 21, 2005 ex parte to FCC on near term VoIP access to E9-1-1 systems
Recent media accounts on the FCC’s intention to examine further the relationship of E9-1-1 service and VoIP
FCC Must Address VoIP 911 Issues, says Martin (RCR Article)
NENA’s Operations Issues Director, Rick Jones recently gave a presentation on the future of 9-1-1 services in the IP environment at the VON Canada conference
NENA’s Technical Issues Director, Roger Hixson gave a recent speech and seminar on VoIP and 9-1-1 before the joint NENA/APCO Conference in Vancouver, Canada
Vancouver NENA APCO VoIP Seminar.ppt
Canadian decision issued regarding VoIP and 9-1-1: The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) early this week (April 4) announced a decision that addresses the requirements for voice over Internet protocol (VoIP) service providers to offer emergency 9-1-1 service access. The news release can be found at the following link, with a link to the full text of the decision at its end.
IP Capable PSAP Features and Capabilities Standard (58-001)was approved by the NENA Executive Board February 1, 2005: This document contains a list of capabilities or features that need to be supported in a public safety answering point (PSAP) using IP based 9-1-1 equipment and software. These capabilities and features should be considered a minimum level of functionality, developed in an open architecture environment that will allow interoperability at all levels of the 9-1-1 network, regardless of vendor.
VON Coalition White Paper:The VON Coalition has released a 9-1-1 white paper, which includes a progress report regarding the original NENA/VON Coalition agreement released December, 2003. It details what member companies and others have done in the past year while providing an overview of steps in progress.
Voice over Internet Service Leaders Making Significant Progress on 9-1-1:National 9-1-1 Association Lauds VoIP Industry 9-1-1 Efforts, Encourages Further Work.Washington, D.C. – The VON Coalition, a group of the nation’s leading Voice-over Internet Protocol (VoIP) companies, joined with NENA, the National Emergency Number Association, one year ago in a voluntary agreement to develop technical and operational methods for providing access to 9-1-1 services by users of Voice over Internet services. One year later, this joint effort has resulted in progress in all areas of the original agreement. Click here to view the full press release. (12/10/04)
FCC VoIP Action and 9-1-1: The Federal Communications Commission approved a Mememorandum Opinion and Order Tuesday, November 9, preempting state regulatory certification authority over Vonage and similar type VoiP (Voice over Internet Protocol) service offered by cable, phone and other companies. While the actual written order will not be available for a few days, there were several verbal/written comments concerning its impact on 9-1-1. Follow this link to a NENA article concerning the decision, FCC VoIP Action and 9-1-1. Additional information and analysis will be provided by NENA when the official document becomes publicly available.
NENA Member Alert
Updating the NENA-VON Coalition Agreement:
NENA Issues a Call for Action and Blueprint for Internet Protocol, VoIP and E9-1-1: NENA issued an open letter and position paper to concerned citizens and leaders in support of a public policy blueprint for the advancement of Internet-based service offerings for 9-1-1. Participating in the recent Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) VoIP E9-1-1 Solution Summit, NENA representatives stated the need for a comprehensive long term technical, operational and public policy strategy to match emerging short term intermediate solution sets being made available to address VoIP 9-1-1 capabilities. Click the below links for more information:
VOIP – Tomorrow’s 9-1-1 Today: Bill McMurray, NENA’s first VP, recently spoke to the California NENA Chapter about the impacts and needs surrounding Internet Protocol (IP) and its growing relationship to E9-1-1 service, and the NENA and VON Coalition agreement. His speech summarizes many of the issues about Voice over IP and the need to modernize E9-1-1 systems. Click here to read the speech.
NENA and VoIP Leaders Forge Agreement to Provide Access to Emergency Service for VoIP Users: a joint press release issued Monday, December 1 by NENA and the VON Coalition. On the same day, the Federal Communications Commission held a public VoIP Forum, at which 9-1-1 was a much-discussed topic. For complete details of the very successful forum (marked by an overflow standing-room-only audience), including a webcast, copies of all prepared presentations and submissions of non-presenters, go to www.fcc.gov/voip/. As presenters, four VoIP provider CEOs advised FCC leaders that they supported the NENA agreement and its ‘aggressive’ timelines for E9-1-1 solution development work.
Voice over Internet and 9-1-1: There has been a great deal of discussion about VoIP and 9-1-1, as well as NENA’s role with the VON Coalition and NENA’s involvement with the PSAP Registry. It is important that we all have a clear understanding of the issues and why NENA has taken the position we have with the VON Coalition and the Registry. Click here for a discussion of these topics.
NENA Technical Lead Team Policy Position on IP and E9-1-1:NENA’s Technical Lead group has defined an overall policy on how 9-1-1 interfaces should work between the general Internet, E9-1-1 processes, and the PSAP. Click here to view the position statement. Watch for summaries of the technical plans for interim and full E9-1-1 capabilities for Voice over Internet and other IP-based communication services.
The NENA VoIP operations committee and its working groups are tackling several issues related to VoIP/IP.For additional information, follow this link
VoIP Characteristics 08-503: The purpose of this document is to procure, create and publish a VoIP primer document to be used by individuals not familiar with VoIP technology.
Network Interface to IP Capable PSAP 08-501: This “NENA Technical Information Document on the Network Interface to IP Capable PSAP” document provides technical information to guide manufacturers of network equipment and Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP) Customer Premises Equipment (CPE) in the development of Internet Protocol based interfaces between the network and PSAP CPE and to assist E9-1-1 Network Service Providers and PSAP’s in implementing such interfaces. It defines a service description for the capabilities that will need to be supported by the VoIP signaling on the interface, as well as the necessary network and CPE elements needed in the supporting architecture. The Appendices to this TID include specific assumptions/issues for individual candidate Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) signaling protocols, that will need to be considered in the specification of (separate) technical reference document(s) that provide signaling requirements for the individual VoIP protocol alternatives identified.
The NENA IP PSAP Features & Capabilities Operational Information Document (OID) was approved by the NENA Operations Committee leadership, June 4, 2004.It is intended to be a guide for NENA Technical and Operations Committees to use in preparation for and installation of IP based 9-1-1 systems in the PSAP. PSAP administrators may also find this document useful for planning purposes, as they prepare to transition from their current equipment to IP based systems. This OID will serve as the base document as work begins now on the development of IP PSAP operational standards, to assist vendors and others in their product and service development work.
The document contains a list of capabilities or features that are expected to be supported in a public safety answering point (PSAP) using Internet Protocol (IP) based9-1-1 equipment and software. These capabilities and features should be considered a minimum level of functionality, developed in an open architecture environment that will allow interoperability at all levels of the 9-1-1 network, regardless of vendors.
(use the title as the link to the doc).
NENA’s First Vice President, David F. Jones testified before theUnited States Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee regarding “The VoIP Regulatory Freedom Act of 2004” (S 2281). As the leader in 9-1-1 technology discussions, NENA was asked to testify before Members on the importance and opportunities of integrating VoIP technologies and services with the nation’s 9-1-1 system.
NENA Statement Before the United States House of Representatives Committee on Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Telecommunications and the Internet Regarding VoIP: On Wednesday, July 7, 2004 the United States House of Representatives Subcommittee on Telecommunications and the Internet held a hearing on Voice over IP and the potential impact of new technology on the existing regulatory environment. Working with Congressional E9-1-1 Caucus Co-Chair and Founder, Representative John Shimkus, a NENA statement was introduced for the Congressional record.