Why you got a Trump text: FEMA's new test alert, explained

Everyone will receive alert during test of national emergency alert system on Wednesday

The presidential alerts will only be used in the event of a national emergency.

The wireless alert system launched in 2012. Trump was not to use the platform as a means of sending a political message.

The presidential alert can only be activated by the current president, but the reasons for doing so are legally defined.

Of course, to receive the alert, your phone had to be turned on and connected to a cell tower that allows you to connect to your participating carrier.

You weren't charged for the message and a simple press of the "OK" button on your Android phone should dismiss it.

FEMA is required to test and maintain alert systems and says the aim is to "assess the operational readiness of the infrastructure for distribution of a national message and determine whether improvements are needed".

President Barack Obama signed the 2015 "Integrated Public Alert and Warning System Modernization Act" into law in 2016.

FEMA reported that people wouldn't be able to turn off this presidential alert.

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They've since created a "cancellation template" and instilled procedure requiring two officials to sign off before any alert is sent.

The hashtag #PresidentialAlert became the top US trending topic on Twitter, where most users complained about the alert system or used the opportunity to crack jokes.

Legislation about emergency alerts have been rising since 9/11.

People have the ability to opt out of other types of regional alerts - such as AMBER alerts for missing children or alerts related to weather warnings - through the settings on their wireless devices.

Earlier on Wednesday, a federal judge in New York City rejected a request to block the test in a lawsuit filed last month by three New York residents. The alert will not interrupt a phone call or an active data session, though FEMA and the FTC are working to make sure the information reaches more people.

If you're looking at another piece of glowing glass - like your television - during the test, you may just see the alert there, too.

The alert will appear as long as the device is on, and may also show up on smartwatches, according to officials.

She said the warning for that specific tornado came via stormspotters reporting to the National Weather Service, who then saw that the appropriate tornado sirens went off in the area.

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