Leader in Public Safety Communications™

FCC Public Notice: The Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau Announces Availability of 911 Reliability Certification System for Annual Reliability Certification

PUBLIC SAFETY AND HOMELAND SECURITY BUREAU ANNOUNCES
AVAILABILITY OF 911 RELIABILITY CERTIFICATION SYSTEM FOR ANNUAL RELIABILITY CERTIFICATION

PS Docket Nos. 13-75, 11-60

By this Public Notice, the Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau (Bureau) announces that the
Federal Communications Commission’s (Commission’s) online system for filing 911 reliability
certifications1 has been reopened for filing the Annual Reliability Certification,2 due October 15,
2016.3 Covered 911 Service Providers4 that wish to begin submitting information for the Annual
Reliability Certification may now do so through the Commission’s online portal at
https://apps2.fcc.gov/rcs911/.

The Commission’s rules require Covered 911 Service Providers to take reasonable measures to provide
reliable 911 service with respect to three substantive requirements: (i) 911 circuit diversity;
(ii) central office backup power; and (iii) diverse network monitoring. Covered 911 Service
Providers are required to file annual certifications of compliance with specified best practices or
reasonable alternative measures.5  Substantive certification requirements are set forth in section
12.4(c) of the Commission’s

1 See Improving 911 Reliability; Reliability and Continuity of Communications Networks, Including
Broadband Technologies, Report and Order, 28 FCC Rcd 17476, 17534, para. 163 (2013) (911
Reliability Certification Order). This collection of information has been approved by the Office of
Management and Budget (OMB) under control number 3060-1202.
2 911 Reliability Certification Order, 28 FCC Rcd at 17497-98, paras. 64-65.
3 October 15, 2016 is a Saturday; filings will therefore be accepted until Monday, October 17,
2016.  See 47 CFR
§ 1.4(j) (stating that in the event a filing deadline falls on a holiday, to include Saturday and
Sunday, “the document led on the next business day.”).

.
4 See 47 CFR § 12.4(a)(4) (defining Covered 911 Service Providers as entities that “[p]rovide[]
911, E911, or NG911 capabilities such as call routing, automatic location information (ALI),
automatic number identification (ANI), or the functional equivalent of those capabilities, directly
to a public safety answering point (PSAP), statewide default answering point, or appropriate local
emergency authority,” or that “[o]perate[] one or more central offices that directly serve a
PSAP”).
5 See 47 CFR § 12.4. On July 30, 2015, the Commission released an Order on Reconsideration in this
proceeding, clarifying that, under section 12.4 of the Commission’s rules, Covered 911 Service
Providers may implement and certify an alternative measure for any of the specific certification
elements, as long as they “provide an explanation of how such alternative measures are reasonably
sufficient to mitigate the risk of failure. We believe that this should include an explanation of
how the alternative will mitigate such risk at least to a comparable extent as the measures
specified in our rules.”  Improving 911 Reliability; Reliability and Continuity of Communications
Network
Including Broadband Technologies, Order on Reconsideration, 30 FCC Rcd 8650, 8651, para. 2 (2015).

rules.6 Covered 911 Service Providers were required to file Initial Reliability Certifications by
October 15, 2015, certifying as to substantial progress towards each of the three substantive
certification requirements.7 Through the 2015 certification process, 220 companies filed Initial
Reliability Certifications, and all of the Covered 911 Service Providers that filed certified that
they had made substantial progress towards each of the three substantive certification requirements
that applied to their respective companies.8

Covered 911 Service Providers are now required to file Annual Reliability Certifications by October
15, 2016, certifying as to full compliance with each of the three substantive certification
requirements, or to alternative measures.9 Covered 911 Service Providers that wish to begin
submitting certification information may register new users on the login page at
https://apps2.fcc.gov/rcs911/.

As with the Commission’s Network Outage Reporting System (NORS), there are two types of users:
inputters and coordinators. Inputters only have access to information that they have submitted,
while coordinators have access to all information submitted by their company. Users responsible for
limited portions of a company’s certification (e.g., particular service areas or topics such as
circuit diversity, backup power, or network monitoring) should register as inputters, while users
responsible for overseeing each company’s certification as a whole should send a request to David
Ahn (david.ahn@fcc.gov) or to John Healy (john.healy@fcc.gov) to be assigned coordinator status.
For
security purposes, these requests are handled on a case-by-case basis.

Companies that serve numerous PSAPs or service areas may choose to enter their responses in an
Excel spreadsheet, which is available for download on the main menu page.10 Once all certification
information has been entered, the system provides a link to upload a signed attestation from a
company’s Certifying Official that such information is true and correct.11

More detailed instructions on how to complete the certification are available as Frequently Asked
Questions (FAQs) at https://apps2.fcc.gov/rcs911/911RCS_FAQ.html and in a User Manual posted on the
main menu of the certification system.
For further information about the certification system and filing process, please contact John
Healy in the Cybersecurity and Communications Reliability Division of the Public Safety and
Homeland Security Bureau at (202) 418-2448 or john.healy@fcc.gov. For further information about the
911 reliability rules, please contact Joseph Schlingbaum in the Cybersecurity and Communications
Reliability

6 47 CFR § 12.4(c).
7 911 Reliability Certification Order, 28 FCC Rcd at 17497-98, paras. 64-65 (noting two-year
phase-in of certification requirements).
8 See 47 CFR § 12.4(d)(1) (defining “substantial progress” as “compliance with standards of the
full certification in at least 50 percent of the covered 911 service provider’s critical 911
circuits, central offices that directly serve PSAPs, and independent monitored 911 service
areas.”).
9 Id.; see also Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau Announces Effective Dates of 911
Reliability Certification and PSAP Outage Notification Requirements, Public Notice, 29 FCC Rcd
13900 (2014).
10 Please note that only users registered as coordinators will have access to the Excel upload and
download capability.
11 See 47 CFR § 12.4(a)(2)-(3) (defining Certifying Official as “[a] corporate officer . . . with
supervisory and network operations in all relevant service areas” and explaining attestation
requirements).

2

Division of the Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau at (202) 418-0829 or
joseph.schlingbaum@fcc.gov .
-FCC-

Contact Us