The cell phone is the most widely adopted mobile device in the world. People take it everywhere and react to the notifications that come to them. That is why it represents the best tool when you want to get an important message across. In this sense, there are already several countries that have implemented an alert message to the population through telephones and Spain has just joined this practice.
The Ministry of the Interior and the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Digital Transformation of Spain announced that they signed an agreement to create a public warning system (Public Warning System, PWS) that serves to send massive and immediate notices to the population in case of present major catastrophes and imminent or ongoing emergencies throughout the country.
The authorities explained that the warning message system will be part of the National Alert Network (RAN) of Civil Protection and will be tendered shortly by the Ministry of the Interior. In this way, the National Civil Protection System will have a new tool for the distribution of notices to the population, which is added to other existing systems, which are generally based on acoustic signals and have an exclusively local scope.
And it is that Spain already has systems such as the seismic alert loudspeakers that exist in Mexico City, but with this initiative, they want to promote a system that has a greater scope and that not only applies to some regions, but to its entire territory.
Thus, alert messages will be transmitted through mobile telephone networks, as established by the European Code of Electronic Communications and as stated in the preliminary draft of the General Telecommunications Law that establishes that countries must have a system of these characteristics as of June 2022.
The implementation of platforms that can send notices to the population in emergency situations or major catastrophes is one of the measures of the Plan for Connectivity and Digital Infrastructures, also included in the Recovery, Transformation and Resilience Plan, they explained. The authorities.
However, it has not been detailed how they will deliver the messages to citizens in an emergency. While it is expected to be via SMS, a system that is already used by the public administration in Spain for many notifications from tax to health.
All European countries will have this option
As mentioned by the Spanish authorities, the creation of an alert system through cell phones is part of the obligations established by the European Union as part of the Electronic Communications Code.
The law establishes that all European Union countries will create a public alert system to send messages to citizens' mobile phones in the event of a natural disaster or another serious emergency in their area.
It must be said that alert mechanisms of this type have already been used by several countries for years. For example, South Korea, during the Covid-19 emergency, implemented a cellular broadcasting system (CBS) to inform its citizens about measures to curb infections. One more example is Australia which, through SMS and location-based technology, since 2012, sends alerts according to the impact of the emergency, that is, to a single region, a city, or the entire country.
Finally, it should be noted that Europe's regulations are also aimed at promoting the development of telecommunications services, including competition and investment in 5G and in very high-capacity networks, so that all citizens and companies of the European Union can enjoy high-level connectivity.