Local authorities say they have responded to several bomb threats within Forsyth County that appear to be linked to an email hoax happening across the nation today.
The Associated Press is reporting that across the country, from New York City to Boise, Idaho, email threats have been made to dozens of schools, universities and other locations, but all appear to be a hoax.
According to Forsyth County Sheriff Ron Freeman, early Thursday afternoon five Forsyth County businesses received similar emails, each demanding payment of cryptocurrency and threatening to detonate bombs if payment was not made. The targeted local businesses included a pharmacy, nursing home, a pet supply store and hair salon, according to Freeman.
Freeman said that there is no credibility to the email's threats and that deputies have since cleared the targeted buildings of any possible threats.
He said that they have been in touch with state and federal authorities and have confirmed that these threats are part of a nationwide hoax that likely originated from outside the United States.
"I don't care where it's coming from, if I can put hands on them, they are going to jail," Freeman said.
The Forsyth County Sheriff's Office Computer Crimes Unit is investigating and is in the process of tracking the emails.
For anyone who has received one of these emails, Freeman said to keep the email and contact the sheriff's office immediately by calling 911 or the sheriff's office non-emergency line.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.