A student while traveling in Texas (USA) had the idea of making a prank when he threatened to have a bomb on an airplane through the AirDrop feature.
The Texas Department of Public Safety said a young man was arrested in connection with a fake bomb threat received by passengers on a flight departing from El Paso to Chicago through the AirDrop feature.
Launched nearly a decade ago, AirDrop works in two ways: send files between people in your contacts or share them with anyone nearby. Recently, Apple changed the way this feature works for the first time by disabling sharing for anyone at any time. Specifically, this feature is Apple replacing the “Everyone” option with “Everybody for 10 minutes”. What this means is that in order to share with others, users must effectively verbally communicate with them before using AirDrop.
However, not everyone updated to the latest version of iOS 16, and that’s why the American Airlines flight Texas bombing hoax was carried out.
The student changed the name of his iPhone to “I have a bomb,” and started sharing AirDrop photos with other passengers before the plane took off.
Passengers received a message saying “I have a bomb and want to share a photo” without any way to identify the source of the message. Immediately, the plane was towed off the runway and back to the gate, where a bomb squad was dispatched to search for explosives. Authorities later determined there was no threat after completing the search.
The student who carried out this prank was later identified through an investigation. He admitted it and said it was just a joke. Authorities say the young man faces state prison time for false alarms following an investigation by the Federal Terrorism Task Force.