It all kicked off after reports emerged that an unidentified person took several people hostage in a local branch of Sberbank, Russia’s largest private bank. As is common in such cases, photos of police at the scene started to emerge online.
News started to snowball on Russia’s largest social media network VKontakte, with people sharing the images. Luckily it wasn’t a real emergency situation, as it turned out that the scare was merely a drill.
These “scheduled exercises” are aimed at protecting customers and employees of the bank from “illegal infringements,” a statement said. Employees, police, and emergency services all took part, it added.
No customers were at the bank during the ‘hostage crisis’ exercise. Sberbank said that the branch will open later on Wednesday.