A telephone activated power controller comprised of an electrical power inlet and a number of power outlets for supplying power to the devices of a computer or other system. A detection circuit detects telephone rings and off-hook conditions and powers up the system. A remote control circuit allows the computer to keep the power on after hang-up or manual power-off. A status sensor circuit tells the computer if the device has been turned on manually or remotely. An inhibit circuit prevents the device from responding to a telephone ring or off-hook condition if it is engaged. The controller also has a surge protection circuit to prevent large voltages or current from reaching the power outlets.