Indonesia joins world to fight cyber-terrorism

Indonesia joins world to fight cyber-terrorism
Indonesian terror suspects arrive at the West Jakarta court to attend their trial on October 20, 2015. Indonesian men went on trial on October 20, accused of links to the Islamic State group, and could face the death penalty if found guilty of breaking anti-terror laws.
PHOTO: AFP

Indonesia- The government has joined the world in the fight to curb the spread of radicalism through the internet because terrorist groups such as the Islamic State (IS) have intensified the online dissemination of their propaganda to lure recruits.

The National Counterterrorism Agency (BNPT) said transnational co-operation was necessary to closely monitor cyberterrorism.

"We will co-operate with other countries to closely monitor websites. This is important because not all internet service providers are located here," BNPT deputy for international relations Insp. Gen. Petrus Reinhard Golose told thejakartapost.com.

Petrus said the agency had attempted to counter online propaganda through an internet platform called "Peaceful Year in Cyberspace."

Quoting Association of Indonesian Internet Providers (APJII) data, the BNPT said there were 81.1 million internet users in Indonesia in 2014, of which 49 per cent were young people and children who were vulnerable to IS influence through social media.

A similar statement was made by Federal Bureau Investigation (FBI) legal attache Joseph Callahan, who said counterterrorism attempts should focus on the internet as terrorist groups used it as a propaganda machine to radicalize people online.

Callahan said terrorist groups also used the internet to raise funds for their organisations, of which all countries needed to be aware.

He said the US would continue to increase its coordination with transnational partners. He said the FBI had developed transnational cyber coordination in both the gathering and sharing of intelligence, as well as to track terrorist financing.

"We do everything we can to get inside [the internet] to know who they are, how are they being radicalized and how to neutralize them," said Callahan.

In addition, British Foreign Office official Ewan Kindness said that IS propaganda in the media was indeed a powerful recruitment and radicalization tool as it provided inspiration for individuals to conduct more complex terrorist attacks.

Even though this phenomenon posed great challenges for intelligence authorities, Kindness asserted that radicalization was a process that could be intervened in. "It's possible to intervene during the process to prevent vulnerable people from being thrown into terrorist-related activities," Ewan said. 

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