Two incendiary devices ignited a fire late Thursday night at the offices of digital giant Google, damaging a Google Earth demo car and leaving a large singe mark on one of the buildings, authorities said. Mountain View firefighters were called to the massive complex on Salado Drive at about 10:52 p.m.
The fire was set at one of the more well-known landmarks, the Google Street View car parked at 1501 Salado Drive in Mountain View, where the Google Maps team is based.
Arriving firefighters were met by Google security personnel and guided to an area where the car – used in Google’s Street view project — was parked and the grass and building were singed.
Firefighters doused the flames quickly.
“Damage was very minimal both to the building and superficial damage to the car, fortunately,” said Mountain View Police PIO Katie Nelson,
A closer look at the scene the next day showed two dark spots where the devices were lit.
It’s not clear what the devices were.
Nelson told KPIX 5 the two incendiary devices have been sent to a lab for testing.
When asked if the fire attack was vandalism or something more nefarious, Nelson replied, “That will be determined through the investigation. Everything has been sent to a lab where there will be analysis including the accelerant that was used in the incendiary device and even DNA if they can pull anything from that kind of determine what was going on there.”
So far, police have not announced a suspect, description or motive. Anyone with information about this Mountain View police want you to give them a call.
Former San Jose Police Chief Rob Davis now works as a security consultant who advises other high tech companies and government agencies. He said there is an openness in Silicon Valley campuses that leave blind spots for security.
Although there’s a range of potential suspects including vandals, upset former employees or an angry ex-boyfriend or girlfriend of an employee, Davis said investigators would be wise to also focus on activists.
“Knowing what the discussion is nationwide and around the world right now with privacy issues and social media, who knows?” said Davis. “But it could be somebody who’s part of a group that has a grudge or a grievance about those types of issues that might be targeting our corporations.”