Tuesday, April 20, 2010

FCC Asks: Can America's Broadband Networks Survive Disaster

The FCC has launched a public inquiry to determine whether existing broadband networks can withstand significant damage or severe overloads as a result of natural disasters, terrorist attacks, pandemics or other major public emergencies. Although core broadband networks are generally presumed to be quite resilient, there may be
weaknesses closer to the network edge.


Specifically, the FCC's Notice of Inquiry (NOI) seeks comment, analysis and information on:

What are the major single points of failure in broadband architectures?


What measures do communications providers already take to minimize the potential for
single points of failure?


What provisions are made by communications providers to ensure the survivability of cell
sites relied on by first responders?


What are the most effective and widely deployed physical security best practices?


Should traffic to and from critical emergency response agencies and for critical services be
prioritized on the networks during emergencies?


What steps have been taken to ensure redundancy and diversity of physical network links to
hardware?


Is the capacity of residential access networks sufficient to handle sudden surges or overloads
in traffic during, for example, a pandemic emergency?


What network management practices are in place to handle overloads during emergencies?http://www.fcc.gov

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