How to activate or deactivate them
- Emergency Alerts on your iPhone may be enabled by default.
- You can choose to enable or disable these emergency alerts in the Settings app.
- Presidential alerts and other threatening emergencies cannot be turned off, regardless of your settings.
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When an emergency occurs, it is crucial to be informed as soon as possible. That way, you can be prepared for what’s next, whether it’s adhering to safety protocols or preparing for a possible hurricane.
If you have an iPhone or Apple Watch, you’re in luck. You have the ability to control your emergency alerts in four easy steps.
It is important to know that some alerts may not be available in your country or region. For example, AMBER (America’s Missing: Broadcast Emergency Response) alerts are active for people who live in the United States.
Your geographic location can also determine whether you are alerted. For example, if a child was last seen in New York, the Amber Alert would be sent to everyone in the vicinity of New York.
In other regions like Japan, J-Alerts are issued by the government to generally notify the public of natural disasters or even nuclear attacks. Whatever the nature of the alert, this is a feature that can prevent injuries and save lives.
With that in mind, here’s how to turn emergency alerts on or off on an iPhone.
Understanding Emergency Alerts on Your iPhone
If you live in the United States, there are three types of government alerts you may receive on your iPhone:
- AMBER Alerts
- Emergency alerts (you can also specify whether a sound should be played for these alerts, even if your phone is on silent)
- Public Safety Alerts
By default, these options will all be enabled. If you want to turn them off or set them up again, here’s how.
How to Enable or Disable Emergency Alerts on Your iPhone
1. Open your Settings app.
2. Press Opinion.
3. Scroll to the bottom of the screen. You will see a section marked Government Alerts.
4. Choose the option whose settings you want to change and enable or disable it, as needed.
If you enable all of these options, then you will be able to receive important weather alerts and other important news.
Are there any exceptions to disabling emergency alerts?
The iPhone’s “Do Not Disturb” feature disables calls, alerts, and notifications when the phone is locked. However, this is not the case for all emergency alerts. High Priority Presidential Alerts are a special class of alerts sent only during a national emergency.
Even if you’ve turned off all government alerts, your presidential alerts can override your “Do Not Disturb” setting, if the emergency is deemed urgent enough.
Regardless of the mobile device you use, you should always expect to see them through if you live in the United States. Some countries may also dictate which alerts you can turn off, so you might not see the exact options listed earlier either.
How to enable or disable test alerts
Test alert settings are accessed separately from actual emergency alerts. By default, these are disabled. But if you decide to change these settings and you live in the United States or Puerto Rico, here’s how to turn test alerts on or off:
- Open the Call application.
- Press the keyboard icon.
- To activate it, enter *5005*25371# and tap the green call icon.
- To turn it off, enter *5005*25370# and tap the green call icon.
After completing step three or four, you will receive an alert telling you that you have enabled or disabled the feature.