Ilec definition

An incumbent local exchange carrier is U.S. telephone company that was providing service when the Telecommunications Act of 1996 was passed. ILECs include the former Bell operating companies, such as Verizon Communications Inc. and SBC Communications Inc. The “local” refers to the central office of a local exchange carrier. Telephone lines from businesses and homes end at a local exchange.
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A company providing local telephone service prior to the introduction of local competition, which introduced one or more competitive LECs (CLECs). In the United States, an ILEC is a company that as of February 8, 1996 provided telephone exchange services to the area in which it was authorized to provide service and was permitted to participate as a member of the National Exchange Carrier Association (NECA). See also carrier, IXC, and NECA.
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