How It Works: Wireless Amber Alert Notifications

Many Californian's received an Amber Alert on their cell phones for the first time on Monday after the notification was issued out of San Diego County.{}

"It kind of shocked me at first, because it was a loud buzzing that wouldn't stop," said Joshua Kisby, who received the alert over his cell phone.

Shannon Watson said she was with her stepfather when she received the alert. She said the loud buzzing noise shocked both of them.

The alert is part of a National Wireless Emergency Alert Program.

According{} to the Federal Communications Commission, the Wireless Emergency Alerts Program now allows for government officials to target emergency alerts to specific geographic areas via cell phone towers.

For example, someone out of state visiting Los Angeles would also get the alert.

In the case of Monday's alert, news broke that a man in San Diego suspected of kidnapping two children was on the run after killing their mother.

Alerts of the man's car and description went out to people across California.

Sparking a stir for many Californians.

"I think it's important, but I don't think it should be statewide, maybe regional. That would be much more effective because it's really rather annoying to statewide people. If someone is missing in L.A, someone in Sacramento isn't going to be able to help out much."

The alert came more than once for some people, even as late as 2 a.m.

"It can get very annoying and upset many customers."

So while some question the effectiveness of the alert, others think its a great way to stay informed.

"I think there will people who will be very upset, but having children myself, if something like that was to happen to my kids, I would want and hope that people will be aware and would help."