Why you got a Trump text: FEMA's new test alert, explained

Most US cell phones to receive 'Presidential Alert' text on Wednesday

Nationwide test of presidential emergency alert system scheduled for Wednesday

Arguably the best reaction, however, came with a baby animal photo attached, when the Houston Zoo re-purposed it as the Cute Baby Elephant Alert System.

FEMA's Antwane Johnson told CBS News:"When those messages appear on mobile devices, people should take those extremely seriously".

There will be a second alert at 7.20pm BST (2.20pm ET), which will instead allow the US President to communicate trough radio and television.

Think incoming nuclear missiles or a massive terrorist attack, a man-made disaster of epic proportions, a meteor or some other sort of nationally scalable natural disaster yet to be imagined.

The WEA system is used to warn the public about unsafe weather, missing children, and other critical situations through alerts on cell phones.

FEMA officials said they would share test result data on how the testing went with mobile carriers to help ensure the system works well in a true emergency. People with their phones on silent still saw the alert message on their screens.

The tests were originally set to take place September 20, but the situation with Hurricane Florence in the southeastern United States caused the tests to be delayed until Wednesday.

Then, about two minutes later, another text message from the Emergency Alert System will go out to all broadcast, cable, satellite and wireless providers. This is the first national WEA test.

Microsoft unveils new Surface devices, smart headphones
There's nothing stopping Microsoft from offering a USB-C port and a USB-A port, thereby giving users to use either standard. It is likely that the Surface Laptop 2 will also look identical to the Surface Laptop , which was announced past year .

The system test is for a high-level "presidential" alert that would be used only in a nationwide emergency.

Not everyone was pleased about the decision to send out the test alert.

Unfortunately, you can not easily opt out of the Presidential Alert, but there are a few workarounds that might work, although they're hard to implement.

People have the ability to opt out of other types of regional alerts - such as AMBER alerts for missing children or alerts related to weather warnings - through the settings on their wireless devices.

Legislation about emergency alerts have been rising since 9/11.

It does not mean the President can use the system to send out non-emergency information.

But the move has prompted a lawsuit in NY, which says that presidential alerts are a "violation of Americans' First and Fourth Amendment rights to be free from Government-compelled listening, as well as warrantless, non-consensual trespass into and seizure of their cellular devices".

Latest News