NU Online News Service, Jan. 27, 2005, 5:32 p.m. EST

The leading life insurance trade group wants carrier employees to be able to use the telephone even if an emergency overwhelms the public phone lines.[@@]

The American Council of Life Insurers, Washington, discusses its role in protecting life insurers’ telecommunications access in the life insurance industry section of the annual report of the Financial Services Sector Coordinating Council. The council represents the companies, communications networks, trading systems and clearing systems that support the United States’ financial system.

The council is supposed to coordinate the efforts of financial services companies and organizations to protect themselves against terrorism and other threats to the U.S. financial system.

The ACLI, the group that represents life insurers on the council, says most of its 2004 activities involved telling member companies about the activities of the council and telling the council about member companies’ views.

But the ACLI says it also has worked with the U.S. Treasury to ensure that member companies would get a quick response on applications for Government Emergency Telecommunications Service cards. Life insurers might need GETS cards in an emergency to get access to the government’s emergency telephone service, the Public Switched Telephone Network, the ACLI says.