The Tennessee Department of Correction is again issuing a call for action against contraband cellphones.

According to a release, Commissioner Tony Parker's call for action comes after a report from the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA). The report tells of the effectiveness of micro-jamming technology to block illegal cellphone signals in correctional facilities.

The report goes into detail on the results of a pilot test by the Department of Justice/Federal Bureau of Prisons of micro-jamming technology at a state prison in South Carolina.

“This pilot program is a clear example of available jamming technology that has been tested in a true correctional environment and has provided results that would render illegal cell phones inoperable inside Tennessee prisons, without disrupting legal communication devices outside the targeted area.” Parker said in a statement.

Illegal cell phones inside prisons have been used by drug smuggling networks to facilitating assaults and escapes, as well as other illicit activities. In 2005, a contraband cell phone helped an inmate escape which ultimately led to the murder of Tennessee Correctional Officer Wayne “Cotton” Morgan.

The corrections industry has repeatedly asked for permission to use “jamming” technology to disable cell phones inside prisons. Last year, Senator Ken Yager (R-Kingston) and Representative William Lamberth (R-Portland) sponsored a resolution in the Tennessee General Assembly that encouraged the Federal Communications Commission to support the use of jamming technology within Tennessee prisons.

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