Several mobile users in India were startled after hearing a loud alarm and a long text message flashing on their devices at around 11.35 am today. The emergency alert was sent by the government to test the new emergency alert system which is being deployed by the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA). A similar alert was sent to numerous iPhone and Android users on September 15 as well.
The message read, “This is a SAMPLE TESTING MESSAGE sent through Cell Broadcasting System by Department of Telecommunication, Government of India. Please ignore this message as no action is required from your end. This message has been sent to TEST Pan-India Emergency Alert System being implemented by National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA). It aims to enhance public safety and provide timely alerts during emergencies.”
A number of social media users took to X (formerly Twitter) to share screenshots of the same. While some people were quite baffled because of the sudden alarm, others were quite confused. The text message was received in Hindi and English both.
“Test message once each in Eng and Hin is well taken. Sending the same alert 6 times is spam, it even bypasses mobile silent mode and makes a huge alarm, is very annoying,” a user wrote.
Another user commented, “Can anyone tell why I am receiving this type of flash message again and again. Is this happening only with my close ones or is it happening with everyone?”
A third user remarked, “Do not fret! This is a sample testing massage. This is a reminder that this notification will be used in case of emergency like a flood, earthquake, war, etc. The sole purpose of this alert is to spread public safety. It is a PAN India EAS.”