White House: Secure 5G is National Priority

President Donald Trump's new America first National Security Strategy includes a key role for next gen wireless.

"We will improve America’s digital infrastructure by deploying a secure 5G Internet capability nationwide," the White House plan, released Monday (Dec. 18), said.

Making 5G deployment a national security priority drew its own applause from wireless broadband providers, who will be rolling out that new service, including with spectrum gained in the broadcast incentive auction.

“CTIA and the wireless industry are pleased that the President’s national security strategy acknowledges the critical importance of next-generation 5G wireless to maintaining America’s competitiveness," said Meredith Attwell Baker, president of CTIA. "We are locked in a race with countries such as China and Russia to be the first to deploy 5G. To win this race we need government to make more spectrum available to industry and modernize the rules governing the deployment of wireless infrastructure.”

Related: Survey Says Massive 5G Upgrades Need Government Facilitators

Making that spectrum available was one of the main goals for former FCC chairman Tom Wheeler, and at least on that issue, the current chairman, Ajit Pai, is in agreement.

Cyberspace got a lot of attention in the plan. " We will use sophisticated investigative tools to disrupt the ability of criminals to use online marketplaces, cryptocurrencies, and other tools for illicit activities," the Administration said. "America’s response to the challenges and opportunities of the cyber era will determine our future prosperity and security."

Accenture estimates that, in addition to boosting national security infrastructure, 5G will create $275 billion worth of investment, three million jobs and boost GDP by a half trillion dollars.

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.