The Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS) uses an internationally recognized eXtensible Markup Language (XML) message exchange data standard known as the Common Alerting Protocol (CAP). Technologies that use CAP and have access to the internet can be programmed to receive and distribute IPAWS alerts. Although most messages are text only, CAP messages may also include rich multi-media attachments and links in alert messages.
Computer gaming systems, digital signs, siren systems, internet search engines, social sharing websites, and instant messaging are all examples of technologies that are or could use IPAWS to deliver lifesaving emergency alerts to the public. Additionally, use of the CAP standard enables industry partners to develop content and/or devices that can be used by individuals with disabilities and others with access and functional needs to receive emergency alerts. Future alerting technology developers are encouraged to leverage IPAWS in ways that will advance the IPAWS mission and vision.
For additional information on CAP and testing with IPAWS, see Alert Origination Service Providers.
Return to the FEMA IPAWS Home Page.