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Mobiles, masts and health

Vodafone has been developing and enhancing mobile technology since the very first call on our network more than 30 years ago.

The health and safety of our customers and the wider public has always been – and continues to be – an absolute priority for us.

Mobile technology operates well within the safety limits set out by international guidelines. The opinion of the independent World Health Organization (WHO) remains the same: there is no evidence to convince experts that this technology poses any risk to human health.

Here’s a quick summary of the basics about how your mobile works

Your mobile device converts voice and data messages into radio waves, which are part of the electromagnetic wave spectrum. The radio waves are transmitted as electrical signals through a network of base stations. Each base station has a cabinet and antennas to send and receive your communication. The antennas are usually fixed to a support structure such as a mast. Base stations relay your signal through cables, or a microwave connection, to a core switching centre, from where it is routed to its destination using the same technology.

What do experts say

There have been thousands of scientific studies into the effects of radio waves on health. The vast majority of experts – such as WHO and the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP) – agree there is no evidence that the use of mobiles or base stations result in adverse health effects when operated within guideline safety limits.

A large number of studies have been performed over the last two decades to assess whether mobile phones pose a potential health risk. To date, no adverse health effects have been established as being caused by mobile phone use.

World Health Organization fact sheet on mobile phones

What are we doing

We are absolutely committed to ensuring the health and safety of our employees, customers and the communities in which we operate. Our vision is to lead within the industry in responding to public concerns about mobiles, masts and health by demonstrating leading-edge practices and encouraging others to follow. We have a defined governance and policies to deliver on this commitment.

Our mobiles, masts and base stations comply with the international health guidelines recommended by the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection.

Matthew Rae, Group Director of Health, Safety and Wellbeing

Key topics

Independent scientific research

Independent scientific research

Learn about how scientific reviews have made a vital contribution to establishing industry guidelines and standards.

How the technology works

How the technology works

How base stations with antennas mounted on masts enable mobile signals to work properly.

Health the science and evidence

Health the science and evidence

We continue to provide information about mobile technology and health openly and transparently.

Our commitments and goals

Our commitments and goals

Our vision is to lead within the industry in responding to public concerns regarding mobiles, masts and health.

Further independent resources