What you need to know about today's presidential cellphone alert

President Donald Trump in the Oval Office at the White House

President Donald Trump in the Oval Office at the White House

Some subscribers allow you to block the last two types of alerts from WEA, but presidential alerts can not be blocked. Others didn't get it at all.

Officials estimated Tuesday that upwards of 225 million USA mobile phones and other devices like smartwatches would receive the alerts broadcast by cell towers, or about 75 percent of all devices.

"This is similar to what has been going on for decades on the television", said O'Connell.

Following Hurricane Katrina, a law was enacted in 2006 that says a message can only be sent to alert about national emergencies or if the public were in peril, according to Bloomberg.

"Got it!" In Seattle, the test alert arrived in the middle of the GeekWire Summit.

Failla called the constitutional questions raised by the lawsuit significant and urged the litigants to find lawyers to help them proceed. The plaintiffs said the alert system fails to give people the chance to opt out.

Failla said the claims were too speculative to block the test.

GeekWire's Kurt Schlosser, right, and John Cook talk GeekWire Summit attendees through the arrival of a national test alert on their phones Wednesday.

Anyone with a wireless cell phone will receive a test emergency message Wednesday anytime between 2:18 p.m. Some have even expressed that they're afraid he may try to use it to influence the election. It will be followed by a broadcast alert two minutes later. And although you can opt out of AMBER alerts and weather alerts, you can't opt out of Presidential alerts.

More than 100 wireless carriers, including all major companies, participate in the Wireless Emergency Alert, the release said, and cell phone users can not opt out of the alerts. This week's alert marks the first time the system has been tested nationwide.

News of the test, which hit back in September, got some folks a little riled up because these alerts allow direct communication between the president and the nation in case of an emergency, like a natural disaster or terrorist attack.

A Presidential Alert is "meant for use in a national emergency, and the only type of WEA alert (wireless emergency alert) that can be sent nationwide by FEMA" according to the agency.

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