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Swatting is an attempt to trick an emergency service (such as a 9-1-1 dispatcher) into dispatching an emergency response team. The name is derived from SWAT (Special Weapons and Tactics), one type of such team. Caller ID spoofing, social engineering, prank call and phone phreaking techniques may be combined. 911 systems (including telephony and human operators) have been tricked by calls placed from cities hundreds of miles away. The caller typically places a 911 call using a spoofed phone number with the goal of tricking emergency authorities into responding to an address with a SWAT team to an emergency that doesn’t exist. Suraya Fadel reports on a hot new trend of “swatting” famous individuals.



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