Forms and Policies

Compliance Notice

This compliance notice is to ensure that the Northern Illinois University community is aware of the restrictions imposed by Section 889 of 2019 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) - Prohibition on Certain Telecommunications and Video Surveillance Services or Equipment. The university's ability to continue to receive grants and contracts from the Federal government – our largest source of sponsored research – is dependent on compliance with this federal regulation. Therefore, it is important that you read this notice in its entirety.

General Compliance Responsibilities

General compliance responsibilities for the Northern Illinois University community include:

  • Do not procure covered telecommunications equipment or services, as defined below.
  • Do not provide covered telecommunications equipment or services to the U.S. Government.
  • Do not use or operate covered telecommunications equipment or services.
  • Notify the Ethics and Compliance Office (eco@niu.edu) immediately if you become aware of any covered telecommunications equipment or services being used by or procured for the University, and/or prior to making any representation to the U.S. Government in connection with Section 889 of the 2019 NDAA.
    • If you are using any covered telecommunications equipment or services for externally funded research, you must also immediately notify the Office of Research Compliance and Integrity (researchcompliance@niu.edu).
  • General questions can be submitted to eco@niu.edu.
Covered Telecommunications Equipment or Services

"Covered telecommunications equipment or services" is defined to mean, telecommunications equipment produced by:

  • Huawei Technologies Company or ZTE Corporation
  • Any subsidiary or affiliate of Huawei or ZTE (view list)
  • For the purpose of public safety, security of government facilities, physical security surveillance of critical infrastructure and other national security purposes, video surveillance and telecommunications equipment produced by:
    • Hytera Communication Corporation
    • Hangzhou Hikvision Digital Technology
    • Dahua Technology Company (or any subsidiary or affiliate of such entities)
Background

Section 889 of the 2019 NDAA contains prohibitions on the use and procurement of "covered telecommunications equipment or services". Absent a specific waiver provided by a federal agency, Northern Illinois University may not procure covered telecommunications to perform work for a federal grant or contract or use "covered telecommunications and surveillance equipment or services" anywhere in its operations or processes, even if unrelated to a federal grant or contract. Because the university has received federal contracts that include the NDAA prohibitions, this use restriction is applicable immediately.

Prohibitions

Section 889 of the 2019 NDAA is implemented through the Federal Acquisition Regulations (FAR) (52.204-24; 52.204-25; 52.204-26) for federal contracts and Uniform Guidance (2 CFR 200.216) for federal grants.

  • The prohibition on using federal loan or grant funds to procure or obtain covered telecommunications equipment or services became effective August 13, 2020 (2 CFR 200.216).
  • The prohibition on federal contractors providing covered telecommunications equipment or services to the U.S. Government became effective August 13, 2019 (FAR clause 52.204- 24 contains the representation: Offeror..." will" or " will not" not provide covered telecommunications equipment or services to the government...)
  • The prohibition on federal contractors using covered telecommunications equipment became effective Aug. 13, 2020 and applies " regardless of whether that usage is in performance of work under a Federal contract." As a result, the University must provide a representation to the U.S. Government whether or not it is using covered telecommunications equipment or services (FAR clause 52.204-24) as part of normal university operations. And, there is a one business day reporting requirement upon identification of covered telecommunications equipment or services during contract performance (FAR clause 52.204-25).
Next Steps

Several university units including the Office of General Counsel, Office of Ethics and Compliance, Divisions of Research and Innovation Partnerships, and Administration and Finance are developing an institutional policy and procedures to assist campus and Principal Investigators with managing this restriction. Additional information is forthcoming.

Frequently Asked Questions

My department, office or lab is not funded by the U.S. Government. Do the prohibitions against using covered telecommunications equipment or services apply to my work at Northern Illinois University?

Yes, the prohibition on using covered telecommunications equipment or services applies regardless of whether the use is in performance of work under a federal contract.

If I have a personal cell phone that is covered telecommunications equipment (e.g. a Huawei phone), may I continue to use it?

Do not use the cell phone for university work. However, you may use the cell phone for personal use.

Does it matter if the equipment or service being used was purchased prior to the effective date of these laws/regulations?

No, the prohibition on use of covered telecommunication equipment or services applies regardless of when the equipment was purchased or when the services were initiated.

My department or the university has identified covered telecommunications equipment that was purchased for our departmental use. Are we responsible for replacing this equipment immediately?

No, contact the Ethics and Compliance Office as noted above. NIU will assess the action that needs to occur, and next steps will be determined and communicated.


Definitions

Commonly Used Terms


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