Web 2.0 — Breeding Ground For The Modern Terrorist

Web 2.0 --- Breeding Ground For The Modern TerroristsIn the days of old, one who wanted to be a terrorist would need to go to an isolated camp far away to learn about making bombs. Now, Twitter and Facebook can already provide easy access for information about bomb making.

‘Window shopping’

There are already some Twitter accounts with thousands of followers that actually serve as breeding grounds for would-be terrorists. There, the followers can easily gain connections and initiate contact with global terrorists. Of course, we cannot fully determine if these accounts are for real, and if the followers actually know what the accounts represent — terrorist or not. Still, the existence of these accounts are troubling.

Some experts think that the social media is now one of the vital tools of today’s terrorist organizations. They use Twitter and Facebook for “window shopping” and later on proceed to private chatrooms to exchange information and techniques from around the world. Some of these people are “self radicalized” and have not even met another terrorist face to face.

‘Self radicalization’

While self radicalization is possible via the Internet, there is usually a “mentor” who influences these would-be terrorists and steers them towards violence. Usually, that person meets with the “student” face to face in public places, may it be a religious or educational institution.

In the case of the Boston Marathon bombings, the Tsarnaev brothers were thought to be self-radicalized. Still, the possibility of an existing “mentor” is not far away from reality. Whether this is true or not, the fact remains that they have taken advantage of the mine of information available on the Internet to wreak havoc on that fateful day.

Do you think the Tsarnaev brothers were self-radicalized? Or did someone else mentor them?

Image: Forbes

The Internet’s Power As Ubiquitous Surveillance

The Internet’s Power As Ubiquitous SurveillanceWhether we know it or know, whether we like it or not, and whether we admit it or not, we have now arrived at a time when the Internet is so ubiquitous that it has achieved the status of being a Silent Stalker — a perfectly detailed surveillance tool.

‘Ubiquitous surveillance’

Google and Facebook now tracks us. Apple tracks our iGadgets. And now, even what we do offline is linked with the known online data about us. Everything we do now involves the use of computers. All our information are being saved, stored, analyzed and correlated with our spending habits, lifestyle, personalities, and health.

Yes, we are now being subjected to ubiquitous surveillance. All of us are being monitored by the watchful eye of the Internet. We can take a few measures to prevent or just limit this, we can cover up our tracks by deleting cookies, or we can use bogus names on social networks and emails. But being followed is simply not something we can opt out of. We have no choice regarding this matter.

‘Freedom and privacy’

Online, privacy is scarce. One wrong click and your data is stored forever in the most hidden corners of the Web. And today, the government and business companies are working together to maintain the scarcity of online privacy because both of them benefit from it.

So, we are doomed. No more private conversations — email, text, private messages on social networking sites — forget it; it’s not private anymore. This is a world where everything you do on your computer or cellphone is being saved, used, stored, and passed around with out your consent. This is a world where all of us are held under ubiquitous surveillance without our knowledge. And to begin with, we were awestruck with this treasure trove of knowledge that we once worshiped.  Truly, we are paying a big price for the advancement of technology — a price that involves our freedom and privacy.

Anybody else here misses old-school snail mail and post-it messages?


Image: Psy Blog