Federal law prohibits the operation, marketing, or sale of any type of jamming equipment, including devices that interfere with cellular and Personal Communication Services (PCS), police radar, Global Positioning Systems (GPS), and wireless networking services (Wi-Fi).
"Jamming devices create serious safety risks. In the coming weeks and months, we'll be intensifying our efforts through partnerships with law enforcement agencies to crack down on those who continue to violate the law. Through education, outreach, and aggressive enforcement, we're tackling this problem head on."
-- P. Michele Ellison, Chief, Enforcement Bureau
The use of "cell jammers" or similar devices designed to intentionally block, jam, or interfere with authorized radio communications (signal blockers, GPS jammers, or text stoppers, etc.) is a violation of federal law. Also, it is unlawful to advertise, sell, distribute, or otherwise market these devices to consumers in the United States. These devices pose serious risks to critical public safety communications, and can prevent you and others from making 9-1-1 and other emergency calls. Jammers can also interfere with law enforcement communications. Operation of a jammer in the United States may subject you to substantial monetary penalties, seizure of the unlawful equipment, and criminal sanctions including imprisonment.
Frequently Asked Questions
GPS, Wi-Fi, and Cell Phone Jammers
File a Complaint
If you are aware that someone is operating, selling, leasing, advertising for sale, shipping, distributing, and/or importing jammers, you can file a complaint at: https://www.fcc.gov/complaints.
- The Communications Act of 1934
- Section 301 - requires persons operating or using radio transmitters to be licensed or authorized under the Commission’s rules (47 U.S.C. § 301)
- Section 302(b) - prohibits the manufacture, importation, marketing, sale or operation of these devices within the United States (47 U.S.C. § 302a(b))
- Section 333 - prohibits willful or malicious interference with the radio communications of any station licensed or authorized under the Act or operated by the U.S. Government (47 U.S.C. § 333)
- Section 503 - allows the FCC to impose forfeitures for willful or repeated violations of the Communications Act, the Commission's rules, regulations, or related orders, as well as for violations of the terms and conditions of any license, certificate, or other Commission authorization, among other things.
- Sections 510 - allows for seizure of unlawful equipment (47 U.S.C. § 510)
- The Commission's Rules
- Section 2.803 - prohibits the manufacture, importation, marketing, sale or operation of these devices within the United States (47 C.F.R. § 2.803)
- Section 2.807 - provides for certain limited exceptions, such as the sale to U.S. government users (47 C.F.R. § 2.807)
- The Criminal Code (Enforced by the Department of Justice)
- Title 18, Section 1362 - prohibits willful or malicious interference to US government communications; subjects the operator to possible fines, imprisonment, or both (18 U.S.C. § 1362)
- Title 18, Section 1367(a) - prohibits intentional or malicious interference to satellite communications; subjects the operator to possible fines, imprisonment, or both (18 U.S.C. § 1367(a))
- Sale or Use of Transmitters Designed to Prevent, Jam or Interfere with Cell Phone Communications is Prohibited in the United States, Public Notice, DA 05-1776 (2005).
- Office Of Engineering and Technology and Compliance and Information Bureau Warn Against the Manufacture, Importation, Marketing or Operation of Transmitters Designed to Prevent or Otherwise Interfere with Cellular Radio Communications, Public Notice, DA 99-2150 (1999).
Enforcement Advisory No. 2012-08: CELL JAMMERS, GPS JAMMERS, and OTHER JAMMING DEVICES
Mandarin Language Version of Enforcement Advisory No. 2012-08: CELL JAMMERS, GPS JAMMERS, and OTHER JAMMING DEVICES
Spanish Language Version of Enforcement Advisory No. 2012-08: CELL JAMMERS, GPS JAMMERS, and OTHER JAMMING DEVICES
Public Safety Entities
Joint FCC-DHS Bulletin on Signal Jammers
For additional information regarding compliance with and enforcement of the Commission's equipment marketing rules as they apply to jamming devices, contact Kevin Pittman or Neal McNeil of the Enforcement Bureau at (202) 418-1160.
Blogs on Jammer Enforcement
Tweets on Jammer Enforcement
Recent Enforcement Actions [Custom Search]