The government does not distribute cellphones to all its employees, but some federal departments implemented a Bring Your Own Device program in 2012 that allows federal employees to use their own cellphones with third-party software installed for security purposes, according to the White House. Employees are reimbursed for voice/data charges.
The pilot BYOD program can result in significant budgetary savings and allow federal employees greater flexibility in conducting their jobs, explains the White House.
In addition, since 1996, government has provided low-cost cellphone service for some low-income families as part of the Lifeline program, according to Forbes. The Lifeline program aims to provide basic telephone service to families who could not otherwise afford it, and strict poverty guidelines are in place to determine qualification for the program. Cellphones are provided in situations in which they are less expensive than landline telephone service.