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Council urges residents to prepare for digital switchover

15 May Council urges residents to prepare for digital switchover

Campaign to raise awareness of the upcoming end of analogue phone lines by 2025.

A campaign has been launched by Essex County Council to raise awareness of upcoming changes to the UK’s telephone network.

By 2025, analogue phone lines will be replaced by a digital landline service. This means that calls will be made over a broadband line.

Residents should be contacted by their telephone provider before anything changes.

The council is encouraging residents to respond to their provider and discuss what they need to do to keep using their phone line.

The campaign will utilise advertising space on buses, bus stops, billboards, radio, and social media to reach as many residents as possible. Non-digital media will be used to help make sure the message reaches all residents, including the 20% of the Essex population that are offline.

For most residents, the change should be straightforward. If you have broadband, you should be able to plug your digital landline into your router, instead of a wall-mounted socket.

Residents should contact their provider if they or someone they know:

doesn’t have broadband at home
uses a personal alarm or healthcare device
has additional needs
lives in an area with no mobile signal
Your telephone provider should tell you if there are any further steps you need to take.

The council is also warning residents to be wary of scams surrounding the switchover. If you receive any requests for money, report it to Action Fraud or call 0300 123 2040.

Cabinet Member for Planning a Growing Economy, Councillor Lee Scott, said: “The digital switchover is a vital step to upgrade current phone lines in the UK, which are very old and unreliable.

“However, some residents could be impacted by this change, particularly if they don’t have broadband, use a personal alarm, or have additional needs.

‘’Together with the 12 Essex districts, as well as Southend and Thurrock, we’re urging residents to look out for their loved ones and neighbours and, if they think they could be affected, to contact their telephone provider and make sure they’re aware.’’