SBE Provides Details on IPAWS Test Failure

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INDIANAPOLIS—SBE has notified its members that the IPAWS Required Weekly Test sent out on April 26 was transmitted with an incorrect signature and has provided details on what steps broadcasters may be required to do to address it.

FEMA’s IPAWS test or alerts include a signature certificate. Any message that does not have a correct signature should be ignored by an EAS device.

The RWT that was sent out on April 26 had a mismatch between the digest inside the message and the digest computed by receivers. All EAS devices should have rejected the test.

On a Sage Endec EAS decoder, if configured correctly the message would not have been logged. DasDec and Trilithic devices would have logged the test but would have an error message attached. All EAS units would have reported failed validations in a temporary log.

SBE says that users should check with their device manufacturer for the exact location of that file and the correct “signature validation” settings for the unit. It adds that all stations should check and correct any issues before the next test on May 3. Stations should also insert a note in the Station Log indicating the failed test and the reason for failure.