New FCC requirements may impact use of open source firmware

The FCC has new regulation that may impact embedded system, unclear how this impacts UEFI’s WiFi usage on embedded systems. I’ve not looked into this yet, so I’ll defer to some existing news sources. Quoting the InfoQ article:

“The United States Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has introduced ‘software security requirements’ obliging WiFi device manufacturers to “ensure that only properly authenticated software is loaded and operating the device”. The document specifically calls out the DD-WRT open source router project, but clearly also applies to other popular distributions such as OpenWRT. This could become an early battle in ‘The war on general purpose computing’ as many smartphones and Internet of Things devices contain WiFi router capabilities that would be covered by the same rules. The rules are apparently motivated by a desire to ensure that devices operated within the US comply to FCC regulations on radio frequency spectrum management and power output. Given the size of the US market, and manufacturers’ desire to create products that reach a global market, the rules are likely to have a global impact. This regulation applies to U-NII devices operating in the 5GHz band, though as dual band systems have become more popular, in routers and phones, this will increasingly apply to most devices with WiFi.”

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