The goal is to warn residents of national emergencies, such as risky weather.
You'll soon be getting a message on your phone from the President of the United States - whether you are a supporter or not. The text should arrive from 11:18AM PT / 2:18PM ET, and it will feature the dramatic heading of Presidential Alert.
It will come through a system already integrated in Hamilton County. "It should be reserved for true situations, true emergencies when we need to get the public's attention". Alerts can be issued for testing, like we'll see on October 3rd, or for natural or man-made disasters, terrorism threats, or public safety threats.
The test will include two portions.
The system is run by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which says all of the country's major cellphone carriers participate.
It is scheduled to come through on smart phones some time after 1:18 p.m. Verizon Communications Inc said almost all of its mobile phone handsets are capable of getting alerts. Personal messages, campaign messages, and other political messages aren't permitted. The test message will be sent to phones connected to US carriers that participate in WEA. Users can not opt out of receiving the WEA test.
The tests have drawn a lot of attention on social media in part because of President Donald Trump's propensity for sending tweets to his 55 million followers.
Finally, FEMA says the test will not be used to steal your private data.
"The EAS [Emergency Alert System] is a national public warning system that provides the President with the communications capability to address the nation during a national emergency", FEMA said.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency is conducting a presidential alert emergency test Wednesday afternoon.
According to FEMA, the WEA test message will have a header that reads "Presidential Alert".
The presidential alert is one of three kinds of alerts in FEMA's WEA system, which also notifies the public about extreme weather or missing children, also known as Amber alerts.
IPAWS News Feed: This is used to deliver alerts to internet applications and websites.
"The idea behind this is to be able to reach any type of device that people would use for communication", he said.