Cancellation of Military 192 and Operator Services

I am currently deployed to Cyprus with my sub-unit, away from our parent regiment. Because we are with the UN we are on Cypriot civilian telephone lines. Our rear party is now having real difficulty in getting in touch with us and state that the option of dialling zero and asking a military operator to connect them to an international number has been withdrawn as a cost saving measure. Can anyone shed any light on this?

I know a little about the UK situation. These options (to remove 192 and operator 100 access) can be taken at a local level (i.e. garrison).

The reason is that everytime you call 100 or 192 it costs your local budget money (about 50p per call I believe). So if your local budget holder wants to save money on the garrison phone bill, he asks for 100 and/or 192 access to be removed. If you can't call it - you can't get billed for it!

This creates a problem in your case. The only option is to get international level 0 put on one or more carefully controlled phones so that essential calls can be made, then you do not need to go thru the operator.

In the UK each regional Bde will have an ATO (Authorised Telecomms Officer) - I may have the exact terminology wrong. ATOs are able to get level 0 changed and 100/192 access restored. However, I believe that it can only be changed on an entire site, not individual numbers. As a result, I think that your only option is to get international level 0.
It would appear your unit is behind the times and you should indeed get in touch with your Authorised Telecommunications Officer (ATO).

The system you have in place for making such calls was deemed as far too costly. It was directed from high (2nd PUS level) some time ago that all sites i.e. Defence wide were to have the barring of Level 0 removed in order that users did not have to go through an operator to make outside calls.

The question is what Level 0 facility should users have i.e. local area access, national or international. Your ATO should have consolidated a return from all users he is responsible for and the unit asked what level of 0 access telephones should have. Level 0 international access is generally at the CO to OC level but in some justified cases lower down the line. At the end of the day, every phone in every unit should by now have a Level 0 facility enabled be it just to dial locally or internationally.

As for operator and enquiry assistance:

Due to changes in the pricing for 118xxx calls, the MOD “Preferred Number” for Directory Enquiries has changed to 118848.

This number is changed at a flat rate of 27p and will allow up to three searches. They will NOT onward connect the call.

This all comes from a letter issued some time ago which I think I may be able to dig out again should you need it.


Book Reviewer
Hasn't your civil numbers in Cyprus been allocated VPN numbers? If so no need for International 0 and saves dosh. This should be done if your unit goes to somewhere like Canada, Kenya etc.
W and M,

Thanks for this. unaware that any VPN numbers have been issued - is this a little like desinating them as "friends and family" but on an official basis? if so is this just dependant on what numbers the rear party choose or should it be driven from the Cyprus UN end?

Watertight - could do with that letter to go into battle with the 2IC.



Book Reviewer
VPN numbers get issued on request as far as I am aware. They are meant to negate this mucking about dialling 0, 192 or 100. You will that most COs and Padres will have a VPN linked direct to their mobile. VPN works on dialling 87 then last two numbers of the mil area cose and fiannlly the extension for example

87 12 3456.

Hope thats clear.

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