Insights Ofcom publishes notice on wider regulatory obligations for satellite and space science users of spectrum


Ofcom reminds satellite and space science users of spectrum that they need to be aware of their potential obligations under the Telecommunications (Security) Act 2021 regulatory regime.

Since October 2022, Ofcom has new duties and powers under the Communications Act 2003, as amended by the 2021 Act, in relation to the security of public electronic communications networks and services. In particular, Ofcom must seek to ensure that telecoms providers comply with new rules to boost the security and resilience of such networks and services against security compromises, including those caused by cyber-attacks.

Ofcom says that public telecoms providers must take appropriate and proportionate measures to identify and reduce the risks of security compromises occurring, as well as preparing for the occurrence of security compromises. They must also take action after a security compromise has occurred to prevent damage arising from the compromise and take steps to remedy or mitigate any damage. Telecoms providers can be fined if they do not comply with the new rules.

For guidance on how Ofcom will exercise its new functions, Ofcom has published its Statement of General Policy on ensuring compliance with security duties and recast what was general guidance as guidance on resilience requirements imposed by or under ss 105A to D of the 2003 Act.

Providers also need to aware of their potential obligations under Ofcom’s General Conditions of Entitlement.

Further, administrative charges are payable by providers of electronic communications networks, electronic communication services and persons making available associated facilities of a description designated by Ofcom for the purposes of s 38 of the Communications Act 2003.

Ofcom has published a General Demand for Information under s 135 of the Communications Act 2003 for the purposes of calculating administrative charges. To read Ofcom’s notice on its website and for links to Ofcom’s Statement of General Policy, guidance on resilience requirements and the General Demand for Information, click here.