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About E911 Service

About E911 Service Over the past few decades, public safety agencies throughout the United States and Canada have invested hundreds of millions of dollars upgrading their 911 systems to Enhanced 911 (E911). E911 service delivers address-specific (versus phone number-only) call-back information to public service answering points (PSAPs) whenever someone makes an emergency call. This enables emergency personnel to be dispatched to the scene even if the caller is unable to speak or if the call is suddenly disconnected.

In June 2004, 8x8 became the first major broadband Internet telephone service provider to offer E911 service to consumers. 8x8's E911 service, automatically routes emergency calls, along with computer-based "screen pops" of caller information, to dispatch operators at local PSAPs.

Since 8x8 E911 calls are routed as emergency traffic, callers should expect to receive the same response from emergency personnel that they would receive from traditional 911 service, subject to the capabilities of the local PSAP. 8x8's E911 service eliminates the need for operators to ask 8x8 callers their location, which could be vital in cases where the caller may not be able to verbally communicate.

FCC and CRTC Mandates

8x8 complies with both the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) mandates that all Internet phone service providers interconnected to the public switched telephone network offer E911 as a standard element of their residential and business offerings.

The FCC has also required Internet phone service providers to inform subscribers that, under certain circumstances, when 911 is dialed from a phone connected to an Internet phone service, E911 service may not be available, or the E911 service may in some way be limited by comparison to traditional E911 service. These circumstances include:

  1. When the location of your 8x8 device is at a physical address other than the one you listed when you activated your account. When a subscriber's broadband phone device fails or is not configured properly. When there is an electrical power outage, service outage or suspension/disconnection of 8x8 service due to billing or other issues. When there is a delay in the provision of 8x8 service ("dial tone") at the physical address provided at the time of account activation. When a change of address has been reported, but not yet been updated on the 8x8 account.
  2. When the local PSAP receiving 8x8 E911 emergency service calls does not have a system configured for E911 services that enables the operator to capture and/or retain automatic number or location information. When due to technical factors in network design and/or in the event of network congestion on the 8x8 network, an 8x8 E911 call may produce a busy signal or experience unexpected answering wait times and/or take longer to answer than 911 calls placed via traditional telephone networks.
  3. 8x8 is committed to meeting the demands of our subscribers for E911 as well as the FCC and CRTC requirements with the same diligence and seriousness with which we have always approached this important telecommunications issue.