Hackers in New Zealand have gotten into police broadcast frequencies and are forcing officers to listen to N.W.A.’s “F--- tha Police” on repeat.
Authorities in New Zealand’s southern region of Otago are baffled as officer’s radios played N.W.A.’s 1988 hit for two days earlier this week. The broadcast interfered with police duties causing officers to become concerned it could put lives in danger.
At least two versions of “F--- tha Police” have been playing since 3 PM Monday. The song features extremely explicit lyrics that espouse violence towards police officers.
Speaking to the Otago Daily Times, Inspector Kelvin Lloyd said this is no joke and that people’s lives are at risk. "It was putting people in danger. There's no question that if it carries on and if they do what they're doing it will delay a response," he said.
The broadcast has interfered with at least one police response already. Officers responded to a call regarding a man pointing a gun at motorists in Oamaru, but were unable to coordinate their actions due to the song playing on their radios.
Along with N.W.A., a cover version by Rage Against The Machine was also heard.
From their debut studio album, Straight Outta Compton, “F--- tha Police” is ranked 417th on Rolling Stone's greatest songs of all time. The song is a protest against police brutality and racial profiling, with Dr. Dre taking the role of a fictional judge while the other rappers describe incidents of police misconduct.
The song was, and still is, considered controversial due to many lyrics which call for violence against police officers:
"Huh, a young n---- on the warpath
And when I finish, it's gonna be a bloodbath
Of cops, dyin' in L.A."
Inspector Lloyd said that no police radios were missing, so the interfering broadcast must be made by other means. It’s possible for hackers to identify police radio frequencies, jam them, and then replace them with broadcasts of their own.
"Any interference with a police radio constitutes a risk to public safety, and anyone caught doing this can face a penalty of criminal nuisance and up to one-year imprisonment,” he said.
This isn’t the first time New Zealand police have had this issue. In August, pig grunts were heard on police radio in Northern Island.