Frequently Asked Questions
Marin County’s Self-Registration Portal (SRP) for
Telephone Emergency Notification System (TENS)
What is Marin County’s Telephone Emergency Notification System (TENS) used for?
- The emergency notification system’s primary purpose is to advise you of any situation occurring or about to occur that threatens harm to life and/or property or is deemed dangerous by officials. This may include, but is certainly not limited to, extreme weather, natural or man-made disasters, crime, pandemics, hazardous materials incidents, and missing persons.
What, if any, of my contact information do you already have in the current telephone emergency notification system for me?
- The Marin County’s Telephone Emergency Notification System uses listed and unlisted/blocked landline numbers provided by AT&T and Verizon.
Why am I being asked to use the Self Registration Portal?
- Many people no longer use landlines and/or rely on their cellular phones or VoIP phones. If you live, work, or go to school in Marin County and are over 18 years old, you may now register your cellular phone number (to receive calls and/or texts), email address, or VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) phone number on our secure portal to be contacted in an emergency affecting your Marin County geographic location.
What if I work in Marin County, but don’t live there, can I register to be notified of emergencies that may affect my workplace address? Or may I register my child’s school in Marin if I don’t live there?
- Yes. When self-registering, simply put the Marin address. You may list up to two cellular phone numbers and one VoIP number to receive emergency notifications for emergencies happening in that area.
- Remember that each geographic address requires a unique primary email address not previously registered as the primary email address for another geographic location.
Can I register more than one address?
- Yes, but you must sign up using a different primary email address. The primary email address is your unique identifier. You can only attribute one street address to a primary email address. Of course, for each location (and therefore for each primary email address), you may list up to two cellular phone numbers and one VoIP number.
- If you listed a primary email address and a secondary email address on one location, you may use the secondary email address as your primary email address for a new location.
Can I create a unique user name?
- No, by default the system uses your email as your User Name.
- The system will not allow you enter or modify the User Name.
Do I have to pay for this service?
- Marin County provides this critical service free of charge to enhance public safety. However, receiving a call on your cellular phone may deduct minutes from your cell phone plan. Calls will typically be less than two minutes.
- Standard message and data rates may apply to each text message sent or received and other charges may apply as defined in your wireless service rate plan. (Please contact your Wireless Carrier for pricing plans and details). You may receive up to thirty SMS message alerts per month.
What is the web address to the Self-Registration Portal?
- The Self Registration Portal URL is https://tens.onthealert.com
What are the browser requirements for registration?
- In order to register, you must have an up-to-date browser (Internet Explorer 8 or newer is recommended and supported). Also, Java™ and cookies must be enabled within your browser. Please go to http://www.java.com if you have questions. If you have difficulties viewing the map on the page, please refresh your screen.
Will registering my cellular phone replace or “overwrite” my landline home phone in the emergency notification system?
- No. Self-registrations are unique from, and in addition to, the automatically included landline telephone database.
How do I know the information I provide through the Self-Registration Portal is on a secure website and will remain confidential?
- Be sure you see the VeriSign® lock symbol next to the URL for the Self-Registration Portal. Marin County respects your privacy. Your contact information will remain confidential. It will never be sold or released for commercial purposes. Emergency notifications will only be issued to specific geographic areas (depending on need).
Who owns the data collected through the AlertMarin SRP?
- The Marin County Sheriff’s Office owns and manages the data collected through the SRP. The integrity of this data will be preserved through the highest level of security maintained within the Cassidian Communications hosting center. You can rest assured this contact information will remain confidential.
How will I know I am registered in the system before notifications are issued?
- Once you complete and submit the registration form, you will receive a verification email. You must respond to the verification email to complete the registration process.
What if I don’t receive the verification email?
- When using a personal email account (e.g., Yahoo®, Hotmail®, etc.), your provider may consider the verification email as spam. Check the “Spam” folder in your email account. If you find the message, simply right-click on it to set preferences for the “Sender” and indicate as “Not Spam.” Your work email address is fully enabled to receive notifications from the Marin County Telephone Emergency Notification system.
What if my email address or phone number changes?
- Because your primary email address is your unique identifier and username, if it changes, you will need to delete your current profile in the Self-Registration Portal and create a new one. Should any other part of your contact information change, such as your cellular phone number, please log into the Self-Registration Portal and make an update. There is no limit to the number of times you can change your information, and in fact, we urge you to do so as often as necessary.
What do I do if I do not have an email?
- You have a few options. You can go online and sign-up for a free email account through Yahoo mail, Gmail (Google) or Hotmail (MSN). You can also use your cellphone number as an email if you have the ability to receive messages on your phone and accept any charges that may accrue on your account. Email formats are as follows (without any spaces or dashes):
- AT&T - your 10-digit wireless phone number followed by @txt.att.net (i.e.: firstname.lastname@example.org).
- Verizon - your 10-digit wireless phone number followed by @vtext.com (i.e.: email@example.com).
- Sprint - your 10-digit wireless phone number followed by @messaging.sprintpcs.com (i.e.: firstname.lastname@example.org).
- T-Mobile - your 10-digit wireless phone number followed by @tmomail.net (i.e.: email@example.com).
Should I expect any further emails or notifications from TENS regarding the registration Process?
- Yes, once a year, you will receive an email stating that your account “has not been updated in (xx) number of days.” Then you will be asked to click on a link that will take you to the SRP page so you can update your information.
What is the purpose of the map on the right hand side of the Self-Registration Portal screen?
- After you enter your address, a pushpin will reflect your exact location on the map.
What if my address is not reflected accurately on the map? Can I fix this?
- First, be sure you entered your address correctly. If accurate, you may adjust your location by simply moving the pushpin found on the map. This is accomplished by right clicking on the pin and moving your mouse to reflect your proper position.
What if I forget my password?
- The Self-Registration Portal includes a “Forgot my password” option to assist those who cannot recall their login.
I plan to re-locate. How do I remove myself from the emergency notification system’s database?
- Log into the Self-Registration Portal and find the “Opt Out By” field. You can then enter the date you no longer wish to receive system-generated alerts. If you want to stop communications immediately, delete your profile by logging in and clicking “Delete Your Account.” Please note that it may take one or more days for your account to be removed from the database used by Marin County’s Telephone Emergency Notification system.
I don’t want to receive telephone emergency notifications on my cell or VoIP anymore. Can I cancel my registration?
- Yes. Log into the Self-Registration Portal and delete your profile by clicking “Delete Your Account”.
Is this the only emergency warning tool that Marin County uses?
- Absolutely not! The Telephone Emergency Notification System (using landlines and your self-registered cell or VoIP numbers) is used in conjunction with other methods of distributing emergency warnings and alerts.
- No single tool will provide enough warning to all residents in all situations. Each emergency warning method has its limitations. It is always important to pay attention to officials and your surroundings by monitoring local radio, television and web.
What can I do to get ready for an emergency situation?
- Preparedness is the key to survival. Marin's disaster response professionals emphasize the critical importance that all Marin residents be prepared to survive for 72 hours in their homes following a disaster. Go to GetReadyMarin.org to put a plan in place.
- Learn more about the Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) in you neighborhood and how to be trained for neighborhood preparedness.
How are TENS messages received on my cell phone different from Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA Messages) from the National Weather Service and other government agencies?
- Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) are emergency messages sent by authorized government alerting authorities through your mobile carrier. Government partners include local and state public safety agencies, FEMA, the FCC, the Department of Homeland Security, and the National Weather Service. Alerts received at the right time can help keep you safe during an emergency. With WEA, alerts can be sent to your mobile device when you may be in harm's way, without need to download an app or subscribe to a service. You do not need to sign-up for WEA Messages. At this time, however, not all carriers are providing them. TENS emergency messages are sent by the Marin County Sheriff’s Office and our public safety partners throughout the county. We have asked you to sign up to receive telephone calls, text messages, or emails on your mobile device. Our messages often include specific details about a critical event.
- For more information about WEA Messages please visit http://www.nws.noaa.gov/com/weatherreadynation/wea.html and http://ctia.org/consumer_info/safety/index.cfm/AID/12082.
Who do I contact if I have other questions?
- For more information, please email SRPAlert@marinsheriff.org.