Portions of Scott County are reprogramming their speed dial, and more than likely editing their phonebook as 10-digit dialing will be coming to the area. 10-digit dialing, means you've got to include the area code, even for local calls, something that many in the Twin Cities Metro are familiar with.

The Scott County Sheriff's Office laid out the mandatory 10-digit dialing plan in a post to their social media last week.

Why do we need to start using 10-digits?

The Federal Communication Commission’s (FCC) July 2020 Order required all telecommunications carriers, to make any network changes necessary to ensure that users can dial 988 to reach the existing National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK (8255) by July 16, 2022. As part of the 988-implementation process, the North American Numbering Plan Administrator (NANPA) has identified 84 area codes nationwide that must transition to 10-digit dialing before the deadline for the number to be operational, including Minnesota’s 218 and 952 area codes (i.e., the difference between calling a number locally as “496-XXXX” and “952-496-XXXX”).

What do you need to do?

Some pieces of equipment you own may need to be reprogrammed to complete calls going forward. 7-digit local numbers will need to be reprogrammed to complete calls to 10-digit numbers or 1+10-digit numbers. Some examples are life safety systems or medical monitoring devices, multi-line phone systems, fax machines, Internet dial-up numbers, fire or burglar alarm(s), security systems, gates, speed dialers, mobile or other wireless phone contact lists, call forwarding settings, voicemail services, and other similar functions. You may also want to double-check where you have listed your personal or business phone number, such as your personal checks, or advertising materials, and/or pet IDs to ensure your number is correctly reflected.

What will remain the same?

  • Your telephone number, including the current area code, will not change.
  • A local call now will remain a local call regardless of the number of digits dialed.
  • You will continue to dial 1+ area code + telephone number for all long-distance calls.
  • You can still dial just three digits to reach 911 (emergency services)

Those who use the area code 952, Southwest Metro and surrounding communities, and 218, portions of Central and Nothern Minnesota, are the ones that will be affected by this upcoming change.

To learn more about this change, additional information can be found on the NANPA website.

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