Nature: Product tampering includes both random mass poisoning and the deliberate poisoning of food and drugs as an instrument in commercial blackmail. It is a modern phenomena born in 1980s.
Incidence: The first case of mass food tampering was in 1982 in USA, when four people died after swallowing the pain-relief drug Tylenol, laced with cyanide. There was no blackmail, no claim of responsibility and no arrest.
Claim: To poison food is to break all the taboos about what is natural and good. Our dependency on pre-packaged and hygienic food has made mass poisoning possible. From the criminal's point of view, it has the merits of anonymity and remoteness: he need never come into personal contact with his victim.
Problem Type: D: Detailed problems
Date of last update 01.01.2000 – 00:00 CET