Feeds

999 comes to VoIP

Emergency calls are go, barring break-ups

High performance access to file storage

Ofcom, the UK regulator, has decreed that VoIP services are going to have to connect 999 calls to the emergency services, though not until September 2008.

VoIP services have been improving in quality and usability to the point where many are indistinguishable from the traditional phone service, depending on the bandwidth available, and Ofcom reckons that's confusing punters who expect to be able to dial 999 (or 112, the EU-wide emergency number) from any normal handset.

Last time Ofcom looked at the issue, just over a year ago, 36 per cent of UK households with a VoIP service couldn't access the emergency services, though most of them were unaware of it.

Since then adoption of VoIP has doubled to ten per cent of UK homes.

Not every VoIP provider will be affected by this - services which offer a "Click To Call" button on websites won't be required to offer 999, but any service which allows the user to call normal landlines will have to link to the emergency services.

So anything that looks like a normal phone should be able to dial the emergency services by September 8, 2008. Just make sure you're not downloading the latest bitTorrent when you need to make that call. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
A black box for your SUITCASE: Now your lost luggage can phone home – quite literally
Breakfast in London, lunch in NYC, and your clothes in Peru
Broadband Secretary of SHEEP sensationally quits Cabinet
Maria Miller finally resigns over expenses row
Skype pimps pro-level broadcast service
Playing Cat and Mouse with the media
Beat it, freetards! Dyn to shut down no-cost dynamic DNS next month
... but don't worry, charter members, you're still in 'for life'
EE dismisses DATA-BURNING glitch with Orange Mail app
Bug quietly slurps PAYG credit - yet EE denies it exists
Like Google, Comcast might roll its own mobile voice network
Says anything's possible if regulators approve merger with Time Warner
Turnbull leaves Australia's broadband blackspots in the dark
New Statement of Expectations to NBN Co offers get-out clauses for blackspot builds
Facebook claims 100 MEEELLION active users in India
Who needs China when you've got the next billion in your sights?
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
HP ArcSight ESM solution helps Finansbank
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.