Recently, a letter was set to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) asking the agency to review the use of cellphone jamming technology within prisons. While jamming is explicitly illegal under the Communications Act of 1934, there are a number of growing technologies that appear to fall outside the technical bounds.
Barnett is the outside counsel for Cell Command, which has a technology that literally turns the phone off, thereby shutting down every available function on the wireless device. Barnett, who also served as the FCC's Chief of the Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau for several years, said there is plenty of precedence for the FCC designating such a technology. Wireless Emergency Alert (WEA), the public safety system that delivers Amber Alerts and other notifications, for example, is very different in the technical sense but is similar in regards to the policy that could bring it to fruition.