Verizon Executive Says 'Always-On' Network Strengthens Nation's Security

ASPEN, Colo. -- Verizon's chief officer for customer service told an industry group today that the overriding goal of government should be to encourage the build-out of as many telecommunications network facilities as possible, as quickly as possible, by as many companies as possible.

Eileen O'Neill Odum, president for National Operations, told conference attendees at the Progress and Freedom Foundation's annual summit in Aspen that this would be the most expedient way to provide the best technology to the greatest number of Americans.

"Lawmakers and regulators need to keep in mind that to make America rich in communications technologies, they will have to do the right thing -- from deregulation of broadband, to the removal of irrational bundling and pricing schemes in local markets, to the liberation of spectrum for the wireless industry," said Odum.

Referring to communications lessons Verizon learned from the national tragedy on Sept. 11, Odum said that the country was, "able to stay in touch and gain a measure of security because of the multiplicity of technologies -- landline, wireless, the Internet, e-mail, instant messaging -- to name a few. If one or more failed, there were others to fill the void."

Odum urged attendees to work together to realize the vision of an America made secure by an abundance of connectivity.

"To take communications security to a whole new level for the entire country, we need wise policy on the part of the national government," she said.

Contrary to the thinking that connectivity worsens the network security issues, Odum told the group that she believes it is the basis of our security.

"For our part, alone and together with others, we'll work to realize the vision of an America made secure by an abundance of connectivity."

Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) is one of the world's leading providers of communications services. Verizon companies are the largest providers of wireline and wireless communications in the United States, with 135.1 million access line equivalents and 30.3 million Verizon Wireless customers. Verizon is also the largest directory publisher in the world. With more than $67 billion in annual revenues and approximately 241,000 employees, Verizon's global presence extends to more than 40 countries in the Americas, Europe, Asia and the Pacific. For more information on Verizon, visit www.verizon.com.