Thanks for visiting Fibre Systems.

You're trying to access an editorial feature that is only available to logged in, registered users of Fibre Systems. Registering is completely free, so why not sign up with us?

By registering, as well as being able to browse all content on the site without further interruption, you'll also have the option to receive our magazine (multiple times a year) and our email newsletters.

Ofcom praises telecoms operators amidst Covid-19 crisis

Share this on social media:

UK communications regulator, Ofcom has set out its strategy for dealing with the Coronavirus outbreak, in terms of helping consumers and businesses adapt their living and working practices, and supporting 'key' telecoms workers.

The regulator acknowledged, in a statement that the next few months will see its sectors play a vital role in supporting society, and ensuring people remain connected. It iterated that telecoms providers are working to ensure resilience across landline, broadband and mobile services as the demands on networks increase, as well as prioritising access to safety-of-life communications systems. 

Ofcom stated that it is working with the government to support the telecoms providers doing their bit in the current situation (such as removing data caps), against a backdrop of ‘operational and financial challenges.’ Because of the work undertaken by providers, a number of people in the sector have been deemed key workers by government, such as telecoms engineers and broadcasters.

Said the statement: ‘Telecoms providers are working together to monitor traffic on their networks and are keeping us informed of the measures they are taking to manage congestion effectively. We welcome the measures taken by content providers and streaming services to adapt their services where possible, so that loads on networks are spread across the day and peaks in traffic are reduced. We will continue to work closely with the government and industry to help support network resilience in the coming weeks.’

This will involve a revision to Ofcom’s Plan of Work for 2020/21 at the end of April and provide a revised timetable for our work. With immediate effect, however, the industry watchdog is suspending all existing consultation deadlines and information requests and putting on hold new consultations, decisions and information requests. ‘We understand that the implementation of new obligations may need to be delayed,’ said the statement. ‘Specifically, we are discussing with government the implementation deadlines of the European Electronic Communications Code.’

Ofcom acknowledged that the current situation has served to demonstrate just how critical investment in fibre and 5G connections is and will remain. ‘Our review on promoting investment and competition in fibre networks and the 5G auction are important building blocks for this,’ it said.

From an operational standpoint, the statement also served to reveal that, apart from its ‘dedicated teams of engineers and technicians who play a vital role in keeping the airwaves safe and functioning’, all Ofcom employees are now working from home in line with government advice. However, said the statement, ‘we remain open for business in the usual way. Please contact us by email, or get in touch with specific contacts by phone as appropriate.’ 

Company: 

Related news

Recent News

07 April 2020

Five free online courses for fibre professionals to access during the covid-19 lockdown.

31 March 2020

UK cable operator Virgin Media has published the steps it is taking to help keep employees and customers safe during the current pandemic, whilst also safeguarding its network.

26 March 2020

Lloyd Felton, chief executive of internet service provider, County Broadband has issued a statement in which he outlined how the company is currently operating, and what the pandemic means for digital infrastructure.

26 March 2020

Specialist training organisation, Cabling Science Institute is offering all of its online training courses free of charge to help support the optical communications industry during this difficult time.