Social media platforms are now part of terrorist groups’ toolkits: S. Jaishankar

External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar said on Saturday that the internet and social media platforms have become powerful instruments in the toolbox of terrorists and militant groups to spread propaganda, radicalization and conspiracy theories. aimed at destabilizing societies.

The Minister was speaking at a special meeting of the Counter-Terrorism Committee of the United Nations Security Council.

“In recent years, terrorist groups, their ideological fellow travelers, especially in open and liberal societies, and ‘lone wolf’ attackers have greatly enhanced their capabilities by accessing these technologies. They use technology and money , and above all, the ethics of open societies, to attack freedom, tolerance and progress. The Internet and social media platforms have become powerful instruments in the toolbox of terrorist and militant groups to spread propaganda theories , radicalization and conspiracy to destabilize societies.

Terrorism, he said, remains one of the most serious threats to humanity. The UN Security Council, over the past two decades, has developed an important architecture, built primarily around the terrorism sanctions regime, to combat this threat. This was very effective in warning countries that had turned terrorism into a state-funded enterprise.

“Despite this, the terrorist threat is only growing and spreading, particularly in Asia and Africa, as successive reports of the 1267 Sanctions Committee follow-up reports have highlighted,” he added.

The minister said technological innovations and breakthroughs over the past two decades have transformed the way the world works in every aspect. These new and emerging technologies ranging from virtual private networks to encrypted messaging services to blockchain and virtual currencies offer a very promising future for a wide range of economic and social benefits for humanity. “However, there is a flip side, particularly when it comes to terrorism. These same technologies have also presented new challenges for governments and regulators due to their potential vulnerability to misuse by criminals. non-state actors, given the very nature of some of these technologies and the emerging regulatory environment,” he added.

Another addition to existing concerns for governments around the world is the use of unmanned aerial systems by terrorist groups and organized criminal networks. “Being a relatively inexpensive and increasingly readily available option, the misuse of these unmanned aerial platforms for nefarious purposes by terrorist groups such as the delivery of weapons and explosives and targeted attacks has become an imminent danger, thus posing a challenge to security agencies around the world.The possibilities of using armed drones for terrorist purposes against strategic, infrastructure and commercial assets require serious attention from the Member States,” EAM said. (SJ/IANS)

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