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$240K Forfeiture to R. Jackowitz, IT Connect for Toll Free Violations

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Released: May 7, 2013

Federal Communications Commission FCC 13-63

Before the

Federal Communications Commission

Washington, DC 20554

)
In the Matter of
)
)

Richard Jackowitz
)
File No.: EB-TCD-12-00000034
IT Connect, Inc.
)
)

NAL/Acct. No.: 201232170007
)
)

FRNs: 0021888045
)
0021888037

FORFEITURE ORDER

Adopted: May 3, 2013

Released: May 7, 2013

By the Commission: Commissioner McDowell not participating.

I.

INTRODUCTION

1.
In this Forfeiture Order (Order), we impose a forfeiture against Richard Jackowitz and IT
Connect, Inc. (IT Connect)1 for willfully or repeatedly violating Section 52.107 of the Commission’s
rules2 by brokering 15 toll free numbers for fees ranging from $10,000 to $17,500 per number. Based on
our review of the record before us, we find that Mr. Jackowitz and IT Connect are jointly and severally
liable for a forfeiture penalty in the amount of $240,000.

II.

BACKGROUND

2.
Section 251(e)(1) of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended (Communications Act
or Act), directs that telephone numbers, including toll free telephone numbers, be made “available on an
equitable basis.”3 Pursuant to Section 251, the Commission has implemented rules “to ensure the
efficient, fair, and orderly allocation of toll free numbers.”4 In so doing, the Commission determined that
the practice of brokering toll free numbers is “contrary to the public interest and thus subject to sanction
by the Commission.”5 Brokering “is the selling of a toll free number by a private entity for a fee.”6


1 For the reasons set forth in the Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture, this Order is directed to Mr. Jackowitz
in his personal capacity and to IT Connect as a corporate entity. See Richard Jackowitz, Notice of Apparent
Liability for Forfeiture, 27 FCC Rcd 7896, 7899-900, paras. 7–8 (Enf. Bur. 2012) (Jackowitz NAL).
2 47 C.F.R. § 52.107.
3 47 U.S.C. § 251(e).
4 Toll Free Service Access Codes, Second Report and Order and Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, 12 FCC
Rcd 11162, 11164, para. 2 (1997) (Toll Free Second Report and Order); see, e.g., 47 C.F.R. § 52.107 (prohibiting
hoarding, including brokering).
5 Toll Free Second Report and Order, 12 FCC Rcd at 11164–65, para. 2.


Federal Communications Commission FCC 13-63

3.
On November 20, 2007, the Enforcement Bureau (Bureau) issued a citation to
Mr. Jackowitz and IT Connect for violations of the Commission’s toll free numbering rules.7
Specifically, the Bureau cited Mr. Jackowitz and IT Connect for warehousing, hoarding, and brokering
toll free numbers.8 The citation put Mr. Jackowitz and IT Connect on notice that if Mr. Jackowitz or the
company subsequently “violate[d] the Communications Act or the Commission’s rules in any manner
described [in the citation], the Commission [could] impose monetary forfeitures.”9
4.
Following the issuance of the citation, the Bureau received a complaint and additional
evidence from Bristol-Myers Squibb Company (BMS) alleging that Mr. Jackowitz and IT Connect
violated the Commission’s toll free numbering rules, yet again, by offering to sell BMS various vanity
toll free numbers containing “trademarks owned by BMS or its partners.”10 Based on an investigation
into the BMS complaint, on July 6, 2012, the Commission issued the Notice of Apparent Liability for
Forfeiture
(NAL) to Mr. Jackowitz and IT Connect proposing a forfeiture of $240,000, for which
Mr. Jackowitz and IT Connect would be jointly and severally liable.11 The NAL ordered Mr. Jackowitz
and/or IT Connect to pay the full amount of the proposed forfeiture within thirty (30) days or submit a
written statement seeking reduction or cancellation of the proposed forfeiture.12
5.
Mr. Jackowitz and IT Connect made multiple requests for extensions of time to respond
to the NAL.13 The Bureau granted several of those requests—ultimately requiring that any written
(Continued from previous page)


6 47 C.F.R. § 52.107(a); see Toll Free Second Report and Order, 12 FCC Rcd at 11189, para. 38.
7 Richard Jackowitz, Citation, 22 FCC Rcd 19998 (Enf. Bur. 2007) (Jackowitz Citation). The citation was issued to
Mr. Jackowitz both as chief executive officer of IT Connect and in his personal capacity. See id. at 19998 (“[F]uture
violations of the Act or [the] Commission’s rules [with respect to toll free numbering] may subject you and your
company
to monetary forfeitures.” (emphasis added)).
8 See id. at 19999 (“It has come to [the Commission’s] attention that your company, acting under your direction,
reserved toll free numbers, either directly or indirectly through an affiliate, from the Service Management System
database without having an actual toll free subscriber for whom those numbers were being reserved. In addition,
your company, acting under your direction, engaged in the selling of toll free numbers for a fee.”); see also id. at
19998–99 (defining warehousing, hoarding, and brokering).
9 Id. at 19999.
10 See Informal Complaint No. 11-C00318946 (filed July 22, 2011) (stating, in part, that “Mr. Jackowitz offered [toll
free numbers] to BMS”); see also Declaration of Lisa Osby, Telecommunications Manager, Bristol-Myers Squibb
Company (May 31, 2012) (“I understood from the e-mail’s signature block that Mr. Jackowitz was the president of
IT Connect, Inc. and that he was writing me in that capacity.”). A “vanity” toll free number “is a telephone number
for which the letters associated with the number’s digits on a telephone handset spell a name or word of value to the
number holder.” Toll Free Service Access Codes, Fourth Report and Order and Memorandum Opinion and Order,
13 FCC Rcd 9058, 9059, para. 1 (1998).
11 See Jackowitz NAL, 27 FCC Rcd at 7903-05, paras. 13–19.
12 See id. at 7905-06, paras. 20–25.
13 See E-mail from Susan E. Colman, Counsel for Richard Jackowitz and IT Connect, Inc., to Richard A. Hindman,
Chief, Telecommunications Consumers Division, FCC Enforcement Bureau (August 8, 2012) (requesting “a 30-day
extension to file [a] response to the [Jackowitz NAL]” in order to “review and analyze [] outstanding documents”
sought by a FOIA request); E-mail from Susan E. Colman, Counsel for Richard Jackowitz and IT Connect, Inc., to
Richard A. Hindman, Chief, Telecommunications Consumers Division, FCC Enforcement Bureau (August 17,
2012) (requesting “a thirty (30) [day] extension of time to file the response to the [Jackowitz NAL]” due to “two
very serious personal emergencies” that make it “impossible for Mr. Jackowitz to provide [counsel] with the
assistance required [] to craft a proper response by the due date.”); E-mail from Richard Jackowitz to Richard A.
(continued….)
2


Federal Communications Commission FCC 13-63

statement seeking reduction or cancellation of the proposed forfeiture or payment of the full amount of
the proposed forfeiture be made on or before October 15, 2012.14 Despite the several extensions of time
granted, Mr. Jackowitz and IT Connect did not respond to the NAL or pay the proposed forfeiture amount.

III.

DISCUSSION

6.
Section 503(b) of the Act authorizes the Commission to impose a forfeiture penalty
against any entity that “willfully or repeatedly fail[s] to comply with any of the provisions of [the
Communications Act] or of any rule, regulation, or order issued by the Commission.”15 As to certain
violators—for example, individuals who are not themselves holders of or applicants for any form of
Commission authorization and whose violations do not involve conduct for which such authorization is
necessary—the Commission must issue a citation warning them of the violation charged before imposing
forfeiture penalties.16 If the cited entity subsequently engages in the type of conduct described in the
citation,17 the Commission may then issue notice of apparent liability for forfeiture, and the person against
whom such notice has been issued must have an opportunity to show, in writing, why no such forfeiture
penalty should be imposed.18 In determining the appropriate forfeiture penalty, Section 503(b)(2)(E)
requires that the Commission “take into account the nature, circumstances, extent, and gravity of the
violation and, with respect to the violator, the degree of culpability, any history of prior offenses, ability
to pay, and such other matters as justice may require.”19 The Commission may also consider deterrence
as a factor in determining the appropriate forfeiture amount.20 The maximum penalty authorized against a
non-common carrier or other entity not specifically designated in Section 503 of the Act is “$16,000 for
(Continued from previous page)


Hindman, Chief, Telecommunications Consumers Division, FCC Enforcement Bureau (September 12, 2012)
(informing the Bureau that Technology Law Group no longer serves as counsel for Mr. Jackowitz and IT Connect,
and requesting a 30-day extension to retain new counsel for “[Mr. Jackowitz] and IT Connect”); E-mail from
Richard Jackowitz to Shante D. Willis, Attorney-Advisor, Telecommunications Consumers Division, FCC
Enforcement Bureau (September 25, 2012) (requesting “one last extension to [November] 15, [2012], in order to
give prospective counsel “time to read all the files” associated with the investigation).
14 See E-mail from Sarah E. Citrin, Assistant Division Chief, Telecommunications Consumers Division, FCC
Enforcement Bureau to Richard Jackowitz (September 13, 2012) (where the Bureau granted a 30-day extension to
October 15, 2012, in order for Mr. Jackowitz and IT Connect to obtain new counsel).
15 47 U.S.C. § 503(b)(1)(B).
16 See id. § 503(b)(5).
17 Id.
18 See id. § 503(b)(4) (providing, in relevant part, that “no forfeiture penalty shall be imposed under [Section 503]
against any person unless and until [] (A) the Commission issues a notice of apparent liability, in writing, with
respect to such person; (B) such notice has been received by such person, or until the Commission has sent such
notice to the last known address of such person, by registered or certified mail; and (C) such person is granted an
opportunity to show, in writing, within such reasonable period of time as the Commission prescribes by rule or
regulation, why no such forfeiture penalty should be imposed.”); see also 47 U.S.C. § 503(b)(3)(A) (providing that
“[a]t the discretion of the Commission, a forfeiture penalty may be determined against a person [] after notice and an
opportunity for a hearing before the Commission or an administrative law judge . . . .”).
19 47 U.S.C. § 503(b)(2)(E).
20 See, e.g., Commission’s Forfeiture Policy Statement and Amendment of Section 1.80 of the Rules to Incorporate
the Forfeiture Guidelines
, Report and Order, 12 FCC Rcd 17087, 17098, para. 20 (1997) (recognizing the relevance
of creating the appropriate deterrent effect in choosing the amount of a forfeiture).
3


Federal Communications Commission FCC 13-63

each violation or each day of a continuing violation, except that the amount assessed for any continuing
violation shall not exceed a total of $112,500 for any single act or failure to act.”21
7.
Based on the record here, we determined that a substantial forfeiture penalty is warranted
for several reasons,22 including to deter Mr. Jackowitz, IT Connect, and others from violating the
Commission’s toll free numbering rules in the future.23 Accordingly, we proposed a total forfeiture of
$240,000, representing the assessment of the maximum forfeiture penalty of $16,000 for each of the 15
toll free numbers that Mr. Jackowitz and IT Connect offered to sell BMS on July 7, July 10, and July 18,
2011.24 We proposed to hold Mr. Jackowitz and IT Connect jointly and severally liable for the forfeiture
amount.25
8.
Despite having been granted several extensions of time to respond to the NAL,
Mr. Jackowitz and IT Connect did not submit a written response seeking cancellation or reduction of the
proposed forfeiture, or pay the proposed forfeiture amounts. Accordingly, Mr. Jackowitz and IT Connect
have failed to identify any facts or circumstances to persuade us that there is a basis for cancelling or
reducing the proposed forfeiture, and we are not aware of any mitigating circumstances that would
warrant a cancellation or reduction of the forfeiture penalty.
9.
For these reasons, and based on the information before us, we hereby impose a total
forfeiture of $240,000, for which Mr. Jackowitz and IT Connect are jointly and severally liable, for
willful or repeated violations of the Commission’s toll free numbering rules, as set forth in the NAL.

IV.

ORDERING CLAUSES

10.
Accordingly,

IT IS ORDERED

that, pursuant to Section 503(b) of the Communications
Act of 1934, as amended, 47 U.S.C. § 503(b), and Section 1.80 of the Commission’s rules, 47 C.F.R. §
1.80, that Richard Jackowitz and IT Connect, Inc. are

JOINTLY AND SEVERALLY LIABLE FOR A
MONETARY FORFEITURE

in the amount of two hundred forty thousand dollars ($240,000) for
willful or repeated violations of Section 52.107 of the Commission’s rules regarding the hoarding and
brokering of toll free numbers.


21 47 C.F.R. §1.80(b)(7); see 47 U.S.C. § 503(b)(2)(D). Section 503(b)(2)(D) applies to non-common carriers or
other entities not specifically designated in Section 503, and provides for forfeitures of up to $10,000 for each
violation or each day of a continuing violation, except that the amount assessed for any continuing violation shall
not exceed a total of $75,000 for any single act or failure to act. Id. In accordance with the inflation adjustment
requirements contained in the Debt Collection Improvement Act of 1996, Pub. L. No. 104-134, Sec. 31001, 110
Stat. 1321, the Commission increased the maximum statutory forfeiture under Section 503(b)(2)(D) to $16,000 for
each violation or each day of a continuing violation, except that the amount assessed for any continuing violation
shall not exceed a total of $112,500 for any single act or failure to act. See 47 C.F.R. §1.80(b)(7); see also
Amendment of Section 1.80(b) of the Commission’s Rules, Adjustment of Forfeiture Maxima to Reflect Inflation,
Order, 23 FCC Rcd. 9845 (2008) (amending Section 1.80(b) to reflect inflationary adjustments for certain statutory
maximum penalties).
22 See Jackowitz NAL, 27 FCC Rcd at 7904, para. 16.
23 See id. at paras. 16–17.
24 As fully detailed in the Jackowitz NAL, Mr. Jackowitz offered to sell BMS the same 15 toll free numbers on
repeated occasions between June 6, 2011, and July 18, 2011. See id. at 7898, para. 6 & nn.30, 53. This Order
assesses a forfeiture based only on the July 2011 offers. See id. at 7905, para. 17 & nn.21, 30, 53, 72.
25 See id. 7905, para. 20.
4


Federal Communications Commission FCC 13-63

11.
Payment of the forfeiture shall be made in the manner provided for in Section 1.80 of the
Commission’s rules within thirty (30) calendar days after the release date of this Order.26 If the forfeiture
is not paid within the period specified, the case may be referred to the U.S. Department of Justice for
enforcement of the forfeiture pursuant to Section 504(a) of the Act.27 Richard Jackowitz and/or IT
Connect, Inc. shall send electronic notification of payment to Johnny Drake at Johnny.Drake@fcc.gov on
the date said payment is made.
12.
The payment must be made by check or similar instrument, wire transfer, or credit card,
and must include the NAL/Account number and FRN referenced in the caption of this Order. Regardless
of the form of payment, a completed FCC Form 159 (Remittance Advice) must be submitted.28 When
completing the FCC Form 159, enter the Account Number in block number 23A (call sign/other ID) and
enter the letters “FORF” in block number 24A (payment type code). Below are additional instructions
you should follow based on the form of payment you select:
Ÿ
Payment by check or money order must be made payable to the order of the Federal
Communications Commission. Such payments (along with the completed Form 159) must be
mailed to Federal Communications Commission, P.O. Box 979088, St. Louis, MO 63197-
9000, or sent via overnight mail to U.S. Bank – Government Lockbox #979088, SL-MO-C2-
GL, 1005 Convention Plaza, St. Louis, MO 63101.
Ÿ
Payment by wire transfer must be made to ABA Number 021030004, receiving bank
TREAS/NYC, and Account Number 27000001. To complete the wire transfer and ensure
appropriate crediting of the wired funds, a completed Form 159 must be faxed to U.S. Bank
at (314) 418-4232 on the same business day the wire transfer is initiated.
Ÿ
Payment by credit card must be made by providing the required credit card information on
FCC Form 159 and signing and dating the Form 159 to authorize the credit card payment.
The completed Form 159 must then be mailed to Federal Communications Commission, P.O.
Box 979088, St. Louis, MO 63197-9000, or sent via overnight mail to U.S. Bank –
Government Lockbox #979088, SL-MO-C2-GL, 1005 Convention Plaza, St. Louis, MO
63101.
13.
Any request for full payment under an installment plan should be sent to: Chief Financial
Officer—Financial Operations, Federal Communications Commission, 445 12th Street, SW, Room 1-
A625, Washington, DC 20554.29 If you have questions regarding payment procedures, please contact the
Financial Operations Group Help Desk by phone, 1-877-480-3201, or by e-mail,
ARINQUIRIES@fcc.gov.


26 47 C.F.R. § 1.80.
27 47 U.S.C. § 504(a).
28 An FCC Form 159 and detailed instructions for completing the form may be obtained at
http://www.fcc.gov/Forms/Form159/159.pdf.
29 See 47 C.F.R. § 1.1914.
5


Federal Communications Commission FCC 13-63

14.

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED

that copies of this Order shall be sent by Certified Mail
Return Receipt Requested and First Class Mail to IT Connect, Inc., 314 Route 94, Suite 2, South
Warwick, NY 10990, and to Richard Jackowitz, 10 Knollcroft Terrace, Warwick, NY 10990-2929.
FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION
Marlene H. Dortch
Secretary
6

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