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Law Officials Warn iPhone Users To Avoid "108" Inquiry


iPhone users beware…there’s a prank going around on social media that can get you criminally charged by law enforcement.  KLCC’s Brian Bull explains. 

Siri is an iPhone virtual assistant who responds to voice commands and questions.

"Hey Siri," I begin.…"What are the temperatures in Salem, Oregon today?"

“The high for today in Salem will be 55 degrees.  And the low will be 42 degrees," Siri replies.

But lately there’s been postings on Facebook, Twitter, and other social media suggesting you ask Siri about the number “108”.  

And Sergeant Brad O’Dell of the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office says don’t do it.

“108” is an emergency response number in India," he says.  "And the phone has been previously programmed to recognize that number as well as other emergency response numbers and equate that to the emergency 911 communication system.”

Besides wasting emergency dispatchers’ time, tying up the system with a prank call could detract from an actual emergency. 

911 centers can trace most calls, even those that are hung up before they’re answered.

Brian Bull is an assistant professor of journalism at the University of Oregon, and remains a contributor to the KLCC news department. He began working with KLCC in June 2016.   In his 27+ years as a public media journalist, he's worked at NPR, Twin Cities Public Television, South Dakota Public Broadcasting, Wisconsin Public Radio, and ideastream in Cleveland. His reporting has netted dozens of accolades, including four national Edward R. Murrow Awards (22 regional),  the Ohio Associated Press' Best Reporter Award, Best Radio Reporter from  the Native American Journalists Association, and the PRNDI/NEFE Award for Excellence in Consumer Finance Reporting.
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