In the wake of the Osama bin Laden raid and the terror chief’s death at the hands of US Navy SEALs, a new national alert system is set to launch in New York City that will warn citizens of terrorist attacks and natural disasters by way of specially-equipped cell phones, according to a report by CBS New York.com.
Local emergency messages, as well as Amber Alerts for missing children would also appear on cell phones equipped with special chips and software.
Presently, the system can operate only on certain high-end cell phones already in the hands of the public. However, beginning next year all cell phones will be mandated to come equipped with the hardware and software that can receive alerts.
Current plans call for the new system to be in place in New York City and Washington by the end of the year. Cities all across the nation should be ramped-up with the system by the end of 2012, according to the Federal Communications Commission and the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
Verizon and AT&T are signed up to move the project along -- these top providers noting that their customers will have the freedom to lock out all alerts except for presidential messages concerning terrorist activity and natural disasters.
Although already in the works, CBS noted that the announcement of the new emergency alert system came in the wake of Osama bin Laden’s death and enhanced safety concerns around New York City.
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