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Reminder: 10-digit dialing in Suffolk becomes mandatory next month

Mandatory 10-digit dialing in Suffolk County is just one month away.

Starting June 18, people placing phone calls in Suffolk will be required to dial an area code for all calls — including calls within the 631 area code.

Phone service providers will begin assigning Suffolk’s new area code (934) on July 16. The New York State Public Service Commission announced the new 934 area code last year, when it said it was running out of numbers in the current 631 area.

With two area codes in Suffolk County, residents will now have to dial ten digits, rather than seven, when placing a phone call. Customers will only need to add “1” for calls to area codes other than 631 and 934.

All customers are urged to update their records and devices to include their area code.

Customers should ensure that all services, automatic dialing equipment, applications, software, or other types of equipment include their area code and recognize the new 934 area code.

These include:

* life safety systems
* fax machines
* internet dial-up numbers
* alarm and security systems
* gates
* speed dialers
* mobile phone contact lists
* call forwarding settings
* voicemail services.

The Public Service Commission announced last year that area code 631 would run out of numbers in 2016. The commission held hearings throughout the county last summer to get public comment on the manner of implementing a new area code, considering whether it should be done as an overlay — where new numbers are assigned the new area code — or on a geographic basis, which would require customers in the area assigned the new code to change their numbers.

The commission opted for two county-wide area codes because forcing businesses to change phone numbers could be expensive and complicated, as they would also need to change their signage and branding.

New phone numbers issued for Suffolk County customers will be assigned the 934 area code beginning July.

After the change, customers will still able to dial just three digits to reach 911. If 211, 311, 411, 511, 611, 711 or 811 are currently available in your community, you will still dial these codes with just three digits, the PSC said.

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