Emails are Still the Weapon of Choice

10496162276?profile=RESIZE_400xThe very first version of what would become known as ‘email’ was invented in 1965 at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) as part of the university's Compatible Time-Sharing System.  Emails, an old, tried and true method of communication – emails are still used for both good and bad purposes.  In Belgrade, a series of email bomb threats were sent on 16 May to Serbian government authorities.  The emails included threats against schools, bridges, restaurants and a soccer match, bringing its rush hour traffic to a standstill in the Serbian capital.  Serbian police said in a statement that no explosive devices were found after numerous searches.  It was not immediately clear who was behind the purported emailed threats.

Nearly 100 elementary schools were evacuated after the threats, as well as several restaurants, including a US based McDonald's restaurant and shopping malls, bridges, a zoo, the airport, a railway station and the water supply company.  A soccer premiership game was also postponed as police searched the stadium.

Police blocked traffic over the bridges during the rush hour, creating a huge gridlock.  “Even though the threats seem to be false, we should not take them lightly,” said the Serbian government minister.  Authorities have not stipulated who is behind the threats that have been recorded over the past several days with gradually increased intensity.[1]

Serbian media said all the threats "came from abroad as a sign of pressure” for Serbia's refusal to introduce sanctions against Russia over its invasion of Ukraine.  As of this date, the reports could not be independently verified.  National airline Air Serbia faced several bomb threats in the past months after being the only European company, besides Turkish carriers, to maintain regular flights to Russia despite a Western flight embargo.  Serbia's pro-Russian Interior Minister said “Serbia is the target of a special warfare that comes from different European addresses.”

Whether you agree or disagree with the political motives of these email bomb threats, they clearly demonstrate the easy of bringing a country to a standstill.  From bomb threats to spreading malware, emails need to me through of as the continued weapon of choice.     

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[1] https://www.mrt.com/news/article/Serbia-s-capital-Belgrade-paralyzed-by-numerous-17176059.php

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