Hawaii Dem calls for 'tough and quick accountability' for false alarm

Hawaii Dem calls for 'tough and quick accountability' for false alarm
© Greg Nash

Sen. Brian SchatzBrian Emanuel SchatzHillicon Valley: Washington preps for Mueller report | Barr to hold Thursday presser | Lawmakers dive into AI ethics | FCC chair moves to block China Mobile | Dem bill targets 'digital divide' | Microsoft denies request for facial recognition tech Lawmakers, tech set for clash over AI Lawmakers weigh challenges in fighting robocalls MORE (D-Hawaii) called for "tough and quick accountability" on Saturday after a false mobile alert warning that a ballistic missile was heading toward Hawaii prompted confusion and panic across the state.

In a pair of tweets, Schatz said that the false alarm was due to "human error" and demanded a quick fix to fool-proof the process for pushing out such alerts.

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A mobile alert pushed out across Hawaii on Saturday claimed that a ballistic missile had been launched toward the state, warning people to "seek immediate shelter" and that the message was "not a drill."

Within minutes, U.S. lawmakers and officials sought to make clear that the alert was sent in error and that no missile was headed toward the islands.

The notification came amid heightened tensions between the U.S. and North Korea, which has sought to advance its nuclear and ballistic missile programs.

Earlier this month, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un warned that he has a nuclear launch button on his desk, and that the country has weapons capable of striking the U.S.