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REGULATION IN NORTH AMERICA

 

Regulation in North America

The first government recognition the GPS technology received in the US was in 1996, in an Executive Order on critical infrastructure protection. Following this Executive Order, Presidential Decision Directive 63, issued in 1998, instructed the Department of Transportation and the Department of Defense should collaborate in order to evaluate the vulnerability of the national transportation infrastructure that relies on GPS.

 

Since May 2000, the US government has discontinued its use of selective availability (SA) - a way to mask GPS signals. This decision made GPS more responsive to civil and commercial users worldwide. A year later, the Department of Transportation published the “Vulnerability Assessment of the Transportation Infrastructure Relying on The Global Positioning System” that was commissioned as part of the 1996 Executive Order - this assessment provided a 10-year forecast of GPS-related needs, augmentations, and alternative navigation systems.

 

It was only in 2004 that in National Security Presidential Directive (PD) 39, that the Department of Transportation and the Department of Defense co-managing the National Space-Based Positioning, Navigation, and Timing Executive Committee.

 

After a rise in GPS spoofing and jamming attacks, the Public Law 114–328, Section §1618, the Fiscal Year 2017 National Defense Authorization Act ordered the Department of Transportation, the Department of Defense and the Department of Homeland Security to study backups and supporting technologies for GPS. A year later, Public Law 115 - 91 - National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2018, the Departments were asked to develop the solution based on their study.

 

On February 12th 2020, President Donald Trump issued an Executive Order emphasizing the reliance of US’s critical infrastructure on PNT services. The purpose of the order - to strengthen national resilience and encourage responsible use of PNT services.


As a response to the Executive Order, in February 2021, The National Institute of Standards and Technology in the US published the “Foundational PNT Profile: Applying the Cybersecurity Framework for the Responsible Use of Positioning, Navigation, and Timing (PNT) Services”. This profile will help organizations identify their dependence on PNT services, detect the disruption and manipulation of PNT services, and manage the risks associated with PNT services.

 

Sources

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC)'s Jammer Enforcement

https://www.fcc.gov/general/jammer-enforcement

 

Official U.S. government information about the Global Positioning System (GPS) and related topics - United States Policy

https://www.gps.gov/policy/

 

NIST PNT Profile: A Quick Guide

https://www.nist.gov/system/files/documents/2021/02/11/PNT%20Services_%20A%20Quick%20Guide%20Final.pdf

 

The Department of Homeland Security's Positioning, Navigation, and Timing (PNT) Program

https://www.dhs.gov/science-and-technology/pnt-program