Hawaii emergency agency password photo shows why OPSEC is actually important

Adjust Comment Print

Social media ignited on January 13, 2018 after apparent screenshots of cell phone emergency alerts warning of a "ballistic missile threat inbound to Hawaii" began circulating, which United States officials quickly dismissed as "false".

After an erroneous alert went to out residents of the US state of Hawaii on Saturday - to their smartphones, radios, and televisions - that a ballistic missile was incoming, Japan's state-run NHK broadcaster also sent out its own erroneous alert.

The false alarm came just days after Hawaii's Emergency Management Agency sent a mistaken warning of a North Korean missile attack to mobile phones across the state, triggering panic.

Hawaii Emergency Management Agency spokesman Richard Rapoza says his agency asked FEMA for clarification on Saturday whether rescinding an alert was an appropriate use of the warning system. State officials said Saturday that their confusion surrounding that protocol delayed the issuance of a correction. The alert also implied that Japan's emergency warning system was activated and urged people to seek shelter.

As the false alarm was confirmed, traffic to Pornhub climbed steadily, and by 9:01 a.m., page views were almost 50 percent above average. The emergency all-caps alert reiterated the danger by adding "This is Not a Drill".

Nielsen told a Senate panel Tuesday the department had been unaware that Hawaii officials did not have a mechanism in place to address false alarms and retract them.

"Don't scare me. It's good that (North Korea) didn't launch a missile", one Japanese Twitter user said.

An attorney said they would look into whether the couple could file a claim against the authorities.

It was 38 minutes between the time the first alert was sent until the second alert was sent, stating that there was no immediate threat and that the first alert was a mistake.

They say during mass casualty events, targeted areas would get plenty of state and federal financial support.

She said she and her family grabbed their ID's, tennis shoes and went to the hotel lobby after getting this alert on their phones. I mean, can you find the right answer at a glance? "To make sure that, 'hey, is there a flaw that maybe is built in that we haven't seen yet?'"