It's time to watch out America.
They claim that this technology will only be used for emergency purpose's, but when was the last time they toled you the truth.
Think about it.
Cell Phone Enhanced 911 Still Years Away
WASHINGTON (AP) - Cell phone users in many states will have to wait years before emergency 911 operators will automatically get the same location information they get from callers with conventional phones, congressional investigators said Wednesday.
The General Accounting Office said less than half of the 50 states report they will have full Enhanced 911 systems, which can pinpoint the location of cell phone users, by 2005 - the deadline for wireless companies to install technology allowing centers with the proper equipment to track callers. Some states were unable to even estimate when the new systems would be installed.
``Implementation of wireless E911 is several years away in many states, raising the prospect of piecemeal availability of this service across the country for an indefinite number of years to come,'' the GAO report said.
When someone calls 911 from a home or business phone, the address is automatically displayed on the screen of the call center. But only around 1,100 of the more than 6,000 centers have the technology to track the exact location of a wireless user.
Steve Seitz, director of government affairs for the National Emergency Number Association, the group representing administrators of 911 call centers, said he agreed with the GAO report.
``It's now an issue of national security and national expectations,'' Seitz said. ``You expect 911 to work whether you're in Hawaii or New York.''
While there are 152 million cell phone users, that number is expected to increase now that the Federal Communications Commission has agreed to allow conventional phone customers to drop their landlines and switch to wireless phones while keeping their home or business phone numbers.
The cost of installing the new E911 technology is estimated at $8 billion over the next five years. While most states have tacked on a surcharge to cell phone bills to pay for the equipment, some have diverted that money to cover other expenses at a time of severe fiscal crunches for government.
The House passed a bill earlier this month offering federal matching grants to states that do not divert their E911 surcharges. Similar legislation has been introduced in the Senate.
Under FCC regulations, the cell phone industry is installing technology to enable 911 centers to locate wireless callers. Current equipment transmits the location of the nearest cell tower.
The industry must install equipment that would locate the caller to within 100 yards - one football field - using either a global positioning device in the handset or technology that can automatically locate a caller based on the distance and direction from the phone to the tower transmitting the call.
Most of the technology must be in place by the end of 2005. Travis Larson, a spokesman for the Cellular Telecommunications and Internet Association, said the industry is working hard to meet the deadline.
The bills are H.R. 2898 and S. 1250.
On the Net:
National Emergency Number Association: http://www.nena.org
General Accounting Office: http://www.gao.gov