VOIP vs Land Lines
NB This is a long post - but Quite Interesting.
BT provides a service called EISEC [Enhanced Information Service for Emergency Calls]
BT has enhanced the service it offers the Emergency Authorities (EA) [Police; Fire; Ambulance; Mountain Rescue, Cave Rescue, or Coast Guard services] by enabling the network to
allow electronic transfer of the callers Calling Line ID (CLI) to the EA, and to allow the EA access to an EISEC-DB in order to directly collect address information relevant to the point of call origin.
The BT SIN 278 covers this service in full detail - it's well written and interesting too!
EISEC is a brilliant service that delivers the actual location of the caller (not the billing address, but the physical address of the line) to the Emergency Authority. The latest EA Control Rooms can automatically tie the postcode of this address from the EISEC database to their command and control databases and mapping systems and can hence log and identify the location of the incident and the nearest resource for deployment.
[Don't knock it, your life might depend on it one day!]
The local fire services are up in arms about Regional Fire Controls and argue about the removal of local knowledge but EISEC will perform the location identity stuff; it's not going to take away the need for fire appliances to rush to the scene, but the technology will automate the call handling front end of the service.
Mobiles have Zone information passed on but this is only covers a fairly broad geographical area.
VOIP was recognised as an issue some years back [well before I retired three years ago] and they wanted to do something before the genie got right out of the bottle!
Clearly they're trying to do something to fix what is now a major problem [they're not interested about where you are all the time] - "The EA will ... only be able to access name and address data for customers who have made a recent 999/112 call. Following a 999/112 call the customer data will be held on the EISEC Client machines for a period of approximately thirty
minutes, during which it will be available for access by the EA" - so it really is a time limited 999 service address access function.
VOIP is location independent so there's no EISEC database for you - and the best way to fix this would be to have a GPS module in your VOIP handset that transmits your position at the front of the 999 call. Or you have to enter your location postcode as part of your VOIP logon - don't be tempted to put your Exeter postcode in because you're too lazy to find out what the postcode is when you're in Leeds.
Under Airwave, most of the EA vehicles now have GPS modules that transmit both on radio messages and when travelling [the mapping systems show vehicles moving across the maps in real time - that's how they identify the nearest available resource]
EISEC -great for PSTN; so-so for mobiles [that'll probably be fixed (and also be great) when mobiles have GPS modules - I know some do already].
VOIP - all 999 calls go to operators spread around the country so you can tell them your location - but you'd better hope you're not in Ashley; there are 9 in the road atlas I have, and two of those are in Hants, so you'll have to be very precise with your location details. [I didn't bother to go through the rest of the atlas, 9 Ashleys made my point]
That's why they want to automate it. Any bright sparks got a good, cost-effective method for automating your physical location related to your VOIP connection (other than my twopenn'orth above) ?
I'm as concerned as the rest of you regarding the surveillance state, but EISEC is an outstanding good use of technology in my view.
I'm done here. I'll get my jacket - it's the one with the worn brown leather patches on the elbows