I ran into an interesting post from Bob K0NR about disabling the WIRES functionality so it can’t activated accidentally. Bob writes:
About once every two weeks, one of the local radio hams gets on the repeater with a DTMF beep at the start of every transmission. We’ve come to expect it now, so the first question to the ham is “are you by chance using a Yaesu radio?” They always say “yes” and then we talk them through the process of turning off the WIRES “feature.”
The WIRES function sends a DTMF signal at the start of every transmission for use with Yaesu’s version of internet repeater linking (which is not used much in the US). The problem is that it is very easy to bump the wrong button on your radio and accidently get it into this mode. This means that this is mostly a nuisance feature in the US.
Just like in the USA, WIRES never became popular in Europe. I think Japan is one of the few countries where this system became popular; in the rest of the world WIRES was ignored in favor of Echolink, the system Yaesu tried to copy.