FCC to Investigate “Significant” Violations of Mobility Fund Phase II Coverage Data Collection Rules and Suspend Challenge Process Pending Investigation Resolution

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Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai has announced that the agency has launched an investigation into whether one or more major carriers violated the Mobility Fund Phase II (MF-II) reverse auction’s mapping rules and submitted incorrect coverage maps. The investigation comes after a preliminary review of the 20,809,503 speed tests filed with the agency in connection with the MF-II challenge process; the window for initial challenges closed on November 26. The Commission has suspended the next step of the challenge process—the opening of a response window—pending the conclusion of this investigation.

Pai noted that a “preliminary review of speed test data submitted through the
challenge process suggested significant violations of the Commission’s rules.” While the Commission’s press release did not specifically name the carrier(s) under investigation, this decision follows informal requests for action by the Rural Wireless Association, Inc. and Smith Bagley, Inc. asking that the Commission investigate Verizon’s coverage data.

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