The Nation



NBTC tightens security for auction of digital channels

The National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission is tightening up on security measures for its auction of 24 commercial digital terrestrial TV licences to ensure the bidding is transparent and fair.

The auction will be organised by the NBTC and CAT Telecom and held on Thursday and Friday at CAT Tower in Bangkok's Bang Rak district.

Natee Sukonrat, chairman of the NBTC's broadcasting committee, yesterday denied that the beefing up of security was related to the current political unrest rocking the capital.

As additional measures, the NBTC and CAT Telecom will work on protecting the computing and networking system used in the auction and a programme involving administrators and auctioneers. CAT will install closed-circuit cameras to monitor the rooms housing the server and its network as well as related equipment that will be used in the auction.

The measures also include the confidentiality of the bidding log. The organisers will allow each bidder to see the log for each licence category if needed.

The NBTC will increase the number of administration staff to support the auction, while CAT will deploy security guards around the buildings.

The broadcasting committee has also approved CAT Telecom's request for a licence to provide digital terrestrial TV broadcasting facilities on its 44 telecom sites.

In two years of regulating radio stations across the country, the committee has granted 3,589 radio broadcasting licences in three categories - commercial, public service and community-based.

The initial licence is good for one year and can be renewed if the radio operator strictly complies with the NBTC's rules.

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