Ban On Mobile Jamming Devices Updated

  • ACMA updates ban on jamming devices
  • Updates address technological changes over the past decade
  • Replaces 1999 declaration

The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) has made a declaration prohibiting the supply, possession and operation of jamming devices which are likely to interfere with public mobile telecommunication services (PMTS). PMTS include 3G networks and equivalent services such as mobile WiMAX.

The Radiocommunications (Prohibition of PMTS Jamming Devices) Declaration 2011 made under section 190 of the Radiocommunications Act 1992 replaces the mobile phone jamming prohibition made in 1999, and follows the ACMA’s 2010 review of the effectiveness of that prohibition. The review found that while the prohibition of jamming devices remains necessary, updates to the prohibition were required to address technological change that has occurred since the original ban was put in place.

“In making the new prohibition, the ACMA notes the continued need for appropriate regulatory arrangements that protect PMTS from unwanted and potentially harmful interference,” said ACMA Chairman, Chris Chapman. “It is vital that people can access the emergency call service, as well as receive warning messages in times of emergency.”

The new declaration includes a definition of ‘PMTS jamming device’ in order to make clear the types of prohibited devices. The standing exemption from the prohibition for on board systems used to provide mobile communication services on aircraft remains.

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