During critical situations, the government agencies disseminate wireless emergency alerts to keep citizens informed.
If you recently received a pop-up notification on your smartphone saying “Emergency Alert: Serious”, rest assured that you are not alone. The message displayed in the notification states, “This is a test alert from the Department of Telecommunications (DoT), Government of India.” To clarify about these emergency alerts, let’s provide some information.
The purpose of messages broadcasted by the DoT is to alert citizens about natural disasters like floods during the monsoon season. The recent messages you saw might be either a test alert sent by the department to ensure the functionality of the alert system or a genuine alert about an imminent danger. In the case of a test, the notification indicates that it is a demonstration.
Government agencies use the default wireless emergency alerting technology on Android and iOS devices to provide timely updates to their people. This service will be utilized mainly during emergencies to keep citizens informed and safe.
If you wish to opt-out of receiving these updates, you can easily disable your wireless threat notification settings by going to Settings > Notifications > Government Alerts and unchecking this option.
How to disable wireless emergency alerts on Android smartphones:
On most Android phones, go to Settings > Security & Emergency > Wireless Emergency Alerts and turn them off.This will also allow Empowering users with full control over their preferences, the option to deactivate personal settings, including extreme threats, severe threats, AMBER alerts, and test alerts, is made available, ensuring a customizable experience that aligns with individual needs and priorities.
Remember, this service is important, and we recommend keeping it enabled to receive updates from relevant authorities.”