Thursday, December 06, 2007

Saudi Security Conference Calls for Better International Cooperation Combating Extremists Online

Saudi Arabia recently hosted a conference on Information Technology and National Security where attendees called for increased international regulations to combat the spread of extremist ideologies.

The conference generated yet another estimate of Al-Qaeda supporting websites - 17,000 and growing by 9,000 a year:

"At yesterday’s final sessions, Khaled Al-Firm, an IT specialist, called for the establishment of an international media forum to combat radicalism and terror. Al-Firm quoted Prince Abdul Aziz as saying that there were 17,000 websites on the Internet which fuel Al-Qaeda ideology, with an annual increase of 9,000 websites per year that seek to find new recruits by brainwashing people."

A very important aspect of political computer crime is the need for media coverage as discussed at the conference:

"[Khaled Al-Firm] said that media battles waged by Al-Qaeda were as deadly as the military operations themselves. He pointed out that while the December 2004 attack on the US Consulate in Jeddah was a failure, it received huge publicity providing PR boon to the militants that planned the attack.

“Terrorists do not just focus on military success. There is a third angle to the operation which is the glory of publicity, which compensates for the failure of the operation,” he said."

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