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VoIP And 911 Calls (DOC)

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									Title: VoIP And 911 Calls Word Count: 601 Summary: Modern VoIP phone technology makes accessing 911 emergency services a new challenge. In today’s modern society we expect to be able to dial 911 and access emergency services. When using a standard home or business phone the 911 operator is able to determine the address of the phone. This is particularly important if you are unable to speak or just don’t have time too. A Voice of Internet Protocol (VoIP) service allows you to make and receive calls using a high speed ... Keywords: voip, 911, calls, phone Article Body: Modern VoIP phone technology makes accessing 911 emergency services a new challenge. In today’s modern society we expect to be able to dial 911 and access emergency services. When using a standard home or business phone the 911 operator is able to determine the address of the phone. This is particularly important if you are unable to speak or just don’t have time too. A Voice of Internet Protocol (VoIP) service allows you to make and receive calls using a high speed Internet connection. It is used instead of the traditional phone service as a way of obtaining free or very cheap calls. Basically VoIP works by using a special VoIP phone or by using a special adapter to connect your normal phone with the internet. You can use a VoIP service from your home or office and now can access your VoIP service anywhere you have a broadband connection. You just plug into the broadband where ever you are, you can travel to another city or state and still use your same phone number. Because your standard home phone was fixed it was easy to associate this with a specific address. However, with portable VoIP service, the phone can be taken practically anywhere. Therefore your address cannot be automatically detected by emergency services.

Traditionally when you call 911, the call is usually directed to a Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP) that is responsible for emergency assistance in that community. The PSAP operator can automatically find your address and send the closest emergency personnel to you. They can generally also identify your phone number. However, consumers that use an internet phone should be aware that the VoIP phone system operates differently from traditional phone system. Whilst the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and VoIP service providers are working together to correct these differences, it is important for VoIP users to be aware that:When making a 911 call from a VoIP service it may not connect to PSAP; It may connect to the administrative line of the PSAP, which may not be maned after hours and probably not be by trained 911 operators; That the call may correctly connect to the PSAP, but may not transmit the user’s phone number and/or address automatically; VoIP customers will possibly need to provide address and other information to their VoIP provider; They will need to remember to update this information whenever they change location; When the power fails or the broadband connection fails the VoIP service may not work. The FCC has imposed several obligations on VoIP service providers. The enhanced 911 (E911) is one such obligation. This imposes several stringent requirements onto the Broadband Phone Provider including that the service automatically provide to emergency service personnel a 911 caller’s call back number and, in most cases, address. However, ultimately much of this responsibility will fall back on the user of the VoIP service. As a VoIP user you should:Provide your accurate physical address to your VoIP service provider. Become familiar with your VoIP service provider’s procedures for updating your address. And promptly update your address information when ever you move. Clearly understand the limitations of your 911 service. And inform other members of your household including visitors and babysitters, about your internet phone service and its 911 limitations. Consider maintaining a traditional phone line, or having a wireless phone as a backup for times of power outages.

If you do use a VoIP phone we suggest you visit the FCC website at www.fcc.gov for more information and contact your provider, to see where they stand with regard to 911 calls. With You in Technology Adam White


								
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