Tech Zone

VoIP and 911: Is Your Agency Prepared?

Issue 5 and Volume 161.

BY CRAIG PRUSANSKY Ever since the public was first made aware of the Internet, people and companies have been creating applications and systems to make our lives easier and make our spending more efficient. One of these systems is the adaptation of a technology called “Voice over Internet Protocol,” or “VoIP,” which allows voice to be transmitted over the Internet as a digital signal hidden in the network traffic rather than as a true electrical signal. The telephone companies have been using VoIP for years to connect their central offices, where the telephone lines from individual businesses and residences converge and are interconnected to other central offices or to a long-distance carrier. A switchboard operator used to manually “patch” the calls by plugging a cable from the subscriber into another plug for another subscriber or for a long-distance call. Electronic switches have since replaced the switchboard operator. These network lines…

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