A pair of astrophysicists have published a new paper which cautions that humans may want to consider the consequences before opening any messages sent to the planet by ETs.
The intriguing thought exercise from scientists Michael Hippke and John Learned looks at various ways in which first contact may turn out to be a Trojan Horse aimed at wiping out humanity.
On a technical level, they note that a lengthy, coded missive from aliens would require computers to decipher and, in turn, this process leaves open the possibility of unleashing some kind of ET malware.
The alien computer virus might then corrupt the systems here on Earth and create chaos on the planet by taking down our power grids and other technological infrastructure.
Find out some of the other scenarios surrounding dangerous ET messages at the Coast to Coast AM website.