The Federal Communications Commission today ruled that wireless push-to-talk service providers are subject to the requirements of the federal Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act (CALEA), regardless of the technologies used to provide those services. The law empowers law enforcement agencies to conduct electronic surveillance by tracking calling information.

The FCC also adopted rules, in a nod to homeland security, that for the first time require wireless and satellite service providers to electronically report “significant” network outages. Previously, wireline and cable telephony providers were required to do so. The increasing use of cell phones and pagers, as well as the nation’s growing dependence on satellite communications as critical infrastructure, made the change necessary, the commission said.

The order also established a “technology neutral” reporting metric that will be used across all telecommunications networks, FCC Chairman Michael Powell said in a statement.