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Police Militarization meets Hacker Culture: Swatting


June 7, 2014

In recent years, a small amount of hackers and gamers have been anonymously reporting fake hostage situations, shootings, and other violent crimes designed to send elite police units, like SWAT teams, to unsuspecting people at their residences.

Swatting is a dangerous and expensive prank, which is easy to pull off. Swatters are utilizing easily accessible technology to mask or even alter the ID during calls to 911 dispatchers. With SWAT teams and paramilitary gear becoming the norm across small town America, these calls have predictably chaotic results.

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Below is an eye-opening report conducted by VICE News that illustrates the dangers of an increasingly militarized police force, coupled with gross incompetence, lack of transparency, and runaway budgets.

Notice the brutal honesty at the 2:08 mark, "We apply for every grant. If there is a grant and we can get money for it, we'll apply for it"