September 19, 2016 12:10 pm
Updated: September 19, 2016 1:49 pm

Apple pushes emergency alert identifying bombing suspect to New York iPhone users

Police in New York have named 28-year-old Ahmad Khan Raham as a suspect in Saturday's bombing in New York City.

Handout/NYPD
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IPhone users in the New York area were surprised to find an unprecedented emergency alert identifying a suspect in the New York explosions on their screens Monday morning.

READ MORE: New York bombing suspect Ahmad Khan Rahami taken into custody

The alert, issued shortly after police publicly identified a suspect sought in Saturday’s bomb explosion in Manhattan, read, “WANTED: Ahmad Khan Rahami, 28-yr-old male. See media for pic. Call 9-1-1 if seen.”

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The alert was sent geographically targeting users in New York through the Wireless Emergency Alert service by the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC). The system allows the government to push emergency alerts from government agencies like the FBI, National Weather Service and Department of Homeland Security regarding urgent situations.

Canadians could one day see the same sort of alert.

Canada’s national public alert system launched in 2015, allows emergency alerts and amber alerts to interrupt television and radio broadcasts. While the CRTC has commented on the benefits of bringing the alert system to Canada’s wireless providers, it has not yet been rolled out to smartphones.

Emergency alerts were also sent out to New York residents after Saturday’s bomb explosion in Manhattan.

WATCH: New York bombing suspect Ahmad Khan Rahami taken into custody

Ahmad Khan Rahami was taken into custody late Monday morning.

In a press conference Monday afternoon, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said the emergency alert system had an ‘extraordinary effect’ on the investigation; however, investigators declined to comment on whether the alert system helped them locate Rahami.

But some New Yorkers argued that a potential terrorism-related alert could cause panic among the already uneasy public.

WATCH: Obama calls New York explosion another act that aims ‘to inspire fear in all of us’

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