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Received an ‘Emergency Alert Message: Severe’ on your phone today? Know what it means

September 15, 2023 4:46 PM IST

text message beep | sample testing message | Emergency Alert Message | alert text

The Department of Telecommunications (DOT) under the Central Government conducted a nationwide ’emergency alert’ test to improve public safety and provide timely alerts during emergencies. Subscribers on Vodafone Idea, Jio, Airtel, and BSNL networks randomly received a flash message titled ‘Emergency Alert: Severe’.

The message, sent in both Hindi and English, stated, “This is a SAMPLE TESTING MESSAGE sent through the Cell Broadcasting System by the Department of Telecommunication, Government of India. Please ignore this message as no action is required from your end. This message has been sent to test the Pan-India Emergency Alert System being implemented by the National Disaster Management Authority. It aims to enhance public safety and provide timely alerts during emergencies.”

This test message was transmitted using the “Cell Broadcasting System” by DoT, which operates under the Union Ministry of Communications. Its purpose was to assess the pan-India emergency alert system being developed by the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA).

Upon receiving the message, cell phones throughout India vibrated and emitted a sharp, alerting beep sound.

An NDMA official explained that this was a “Cell Broadcasting System” message currently undergoing testing and sent by the DoT. The broader objective is to bolster public safety by delivering prompt alerts during emergencies. The NDMA will continue to raise awareness about disaster-related emergencies through such alerts once the system is fully operational.

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Last updated on: 21st April 2024