NU Online News Service, Jan. 8, 2004, 5:21 p.m. EST – Some insurers might be able to participate in the fight against terrorism by signing up for the Government Emergency Telecommunications Service program.[@@]

The National Communications Service designed the GETS program to help key financial services companies and other critical companies complete telephone calls during times when emergencies are overloading the telecommunications system.

Insurers and other companies that have GETS cards can use the GETS system to coordinate emergency response activities, according to Michael Dawson, a deputy assistant secretary at the U.S. Treasury Department.

Dawson described the GETS program today at a conference in Minneapolis that was organized by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. The Minneapolis conference was 1 of 24 conferences that officials have set up to promote programs that can help financial services companies protect themselves and the U.S. financial system as a whole from terrorism.

The number of financial services companies participating in the GETS program is 6 times higher today than it was before the Sep. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, Dawson reported.

Companies interested in participating in the GETS program should talk to their primary regulators, Dawson said.