SAFECOM and NCSWIC Address Communications Dependencies on Non-Agency Infrastructure

The world of emergency communications can be astoundingly complex, especially as additional capabilities and services become necessary to successfully deploy, maintain, and protect communications systems. Many agencies rely on multiple third-party entities to provide these capabilities, including provisioning of critical system infrastructure, cybersecurity, and other services. For example, agencies readily rely on commercial vendors for subscriber units or on commercial utilities for power supply. An agency and its contracted non-agency entities alike are vulnerable to events that threaten the uptime, continuity of services, operations, or resiliency of communications. Regardless of how unpredictable these events may be, agencies can take steps to be prepared when those disruptive events occur.
Using the depth of experience among their members, SAFECOM and the National Council of Statewide Interoperability Coordinators (NCSWIC) have published a white paper―Public Safety Communications Dependencies on Non-Agency Infrastructure and Services—outlining several techniques to prepare throughout the communications system lifecycle for challenges associated with such dependencies, as shown in the graphic.
Given the potential for disruptive events impacting non-agency partners, public safety stakeholders—including system administrators, public administration officials and decision makers, and other communications personnel—might benefit from understanding the potential complications or obstacles they may face when depending on outside sources for infrastructure or services.
To learn more about this document and other helpful resources, visit
Author: Ted Lawson, Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), Joint SAFECOM and NCSWIC Technology Policy Committee Federal Lead

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