They are known as “Swatting calls”, a term that doesn’t even have a direct Spanish translation. A single concept: calls to report threats.

At the federal level, it is a “felony”, that is, a serious crime which, in Florida, reaches the third degree, which is heavily punished.

Retired FBI Special Agent Cesar Paz says:

“Sentences of a fine of $5,000 and also five years in prison.”

But what is behind these fake calls?

Salvi Pascual, CEO of the “APRETASTE!” APP, says: They use “swatting” to clog emergency lines that may not be available at the time they are needed for a real threat.

Cybersecurity expert Esteban Farao says:

“These are communications via ‘voice over IP’, which are virtual phone calls.”

These two digital experts help us put the situation into perspective.

The origin of last month’s fake calls has been identified in a popular messaging app.

“You can connect to a group on Telegram, where most of them are anonymous and there they say, ‘I would like you to call this place to say such a thing’, and they give you all the information for someone to this group can make phone calls,” says Farao.

In the past, they were made with voice synthesizers and today applications with artificial intelligence have simplified things.

“The installation of a voice scanning system is so simple and so little private information is needed that even any stolen credit card can be used to create a server and make it very difficult to trace” , explains Pascual.

“The police may know what phone he was called from, but finding out that the public is the owner of that phone is another story,” Farao says.

“All the individual freedoms that we have that don’t exist in other countries, I don’t want those freedoms to end. But, the fact that those freedoms exist to maintain privacy and Molina that there’s people who use it incorrectly,” says Pascual.

Public safety experts point to the damage caused by these hoaxes.

“Schools, colleges and universities must be evacuated and specialist units must also be deployed. These violations of the law must and always will be punished by state and federal law,” Paz said.

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