Emails from Florida-Emergency managers are being blocked by AOL because it detects them as spam.
The hurricane-hit state sends out emails to over 4,000 people warning them of impending natural disasters, but the unfortunate mix-up could leave many unaware of impending danger.
"In the 16 years I've been in this office, it is the number one thing that best informs the public," said Nathan McCollum, Indian River county's emergency management coordinator, speaking to The Washington Post. "We know it's going out but, in the heat of the moment, it's not a reliable system."
Even though Florida has been making efforts to prevent the emails from getting blocked some spam experts have said such a mistake is inevitable.
"It's all dependent on how the white-list is administered," said Paul Wood, chief information security analyst for an email filtering company Messagelabs. "If you're working at 99.9 percent there still going to be some collateral damage. The best thing is to make sure that white-lists are determined using a number of different methods of evaluation." According to the Post, AOL is working to fix the problem.