VoIP service users can have access to their country's emergency services in a similar way as if using a traditional telephone line. When businesses plan to move their communications into the cloud, they often have questions regarding emergency services support while using IP-based solutions. Technology in this sector has advanced significantly, and even with an all-IP enterprise telephone system, companies should not miss out on emergency calling capabilities.

Emergency services are an integral part of cloud telephony solutions, and it is therefore important to have a clear understanding regarding this aspect of IP technology. Here is a list of top 5 most frequently asked questions to help you get a better view.

What is a PSAP?

Calls to emergency numbers (such as 911, 999, 112) are routed to a Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP). A PSAP is a call center where emergency calls are delivered and processed according to a specific operating policy. Often referred to as E911, an emergency service identifies the location of the caller and routes the call to the appropriate local PSAP. This service also provides the PSAP with location information, enabling emergency responders to dispatch a team to where the caller is. Even in the case where you cannot talk, they will know where you are to provide help.

How to register an E911 address?

In general, VoIP solutions are very useful to businesses because they provide increased geographic flexibility. But this creates a challenge in case of an emergency, because the actual physical location of a caller is more difficult to identify. Therefore, VoIP providers enable E911 by having customers register their physical address prior to service activation and update it upon any changes. This ensures that in case of an emergency, rescue services are dispatched to the correct location.

What to do when activating VoIP emergency services?

When subscribing  to VoIP services, provide your accurate physical address to your service provider to ensure that emergency services can quickly be sent to your location. Also, it is recommended to be familiar with your VoIP service provider's procedures for updating your address, and promptly modify your address information if you relocate.

Are emergency services critical to service providers?

The availability of emergency services is a key requirement for various governmental institutions. The same applies to businesses where a civilian address alone is not sufficient for first responders to locate 911 callers when they are on site. These include companies such as hotels, resorts and multi-dwelling units. For this reason, VoIP and SIP trunking providers have an obligation to offer emergency services to their customers. Without emergency service capabilities, these providers are not even allowed to supply businesses with communication solutions.

How reliable are emergency services over VoIP?

Compliant VoIP providers deploy fully redundant and resilient voice solutions to ensure a high level of emergency service availability. Reliable communication providers, such as DIDWW, with the highest uptime of their services reaching 99,998%, assure enterprises that in the event of an emergency, their call will get through to the relevant PSAP.

Meeting the highest standards of regulatory compliance, DIDWW ensures reliable connectivity to PSAPs via local dialing in 27 countries. The DIDWW Emergency Dialing service allows outgoing emergency calls from virtual phone numbers, thereby enabling DIDWW customers to enter new markets covering a diverse range of business initiatives, including those that require compliance with the most stringent telephony regulations.