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FCC Grants Waivers to Jewish Community Centers

The FCC has granted an "emergency waiver" to Jewish community centers (JCCs) and their ISPs to allow JCCs and law enforcement to get access to the caller-ID info of "threatening and harassing callers."

That follows a spate of threats to such centers in upstate New York.

Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) had asked for the waiver earlier this week, citing 69 incidents at 54 centers since the beginning of the year. 

"FCC rules generally require phone companies to respect a calling party’s request to have its caller-ID information blocked from the party receiving the call," the FCC said in announcing the waiver. "A waiver of this rule may help the community centers and law enforcement identify abusive and potentially dangerous callers.

The FCC issued a similar waiver last year to a school in New York state, a point Schumer had made in asking for the waiver.

But the FCC has gone farther than the temporary fix, seeking comment on whether that waiver should be made permanent.