At its Open Meeting yesterday, the FCC adopted a Report and Order authorizing interconnected VoIP providers to receive numbering resources directly from the Numbering Administrator. (Currently, they cannot obtain numbers directly and need to rely on a local exchange carrier partner to obtain numbering resources for them.) The text of the Order has not been released. However, based on the discussion at the Open Meeting, it appears that the Order will contain the following provisions.
Interconnected VoIP providers will be allowed to seek FCC authorization to obtain numbering resources directly from the Numbering Administrator. Providers that obtain numbering resources will be required to comply with all of the FCC’s numbering rules and all relevant industry guidelines and practices and to notify relevant state commissions at least 30 days before requesting numbers.
Providers will also be required to provide proof of compliance with the FCC’s facilities readiness requirements and certify that: (1) they have the requisite technical, managerial and financial capacity to provide service; and (2) they comply with all USF, 911, and other obligations.
The item also directs the North American Numbering Council to examine specific considerations for VoIP porting (not specified) and report back to the FCC within 6 months.
To enhance public safety and ensure proper routing of emergency calls, the Order also allows VoIP Positioning Centers to directly access information needed for delivery of E911 services.
The order also makes it clear that obtaining numbers directly is voluntary, not mandatory, and that the only numbers being addressed are 10-digit NANP numbers not IP addresses or other identifiers.