Europol to Hunt Extremists Spreading ISIS Propaganda on Social Media

Europol is going after people using social media platforms to spread ISIS propaganda. 

It was the Anonymous hacktivist group who took the initiative and exposed 26,000+ Twitter accounts having alleged links with ISIS/ISIL group. The group also leaked a list of websites allegdly spporting the extremist group.

Now a new Police Unit has been established which consists of investigators from across the Europe to scour the web for the key individuals who are backing ISIS’s social media propaganda campaign.

This new team will track down main perpetrators behind the continuously spreading 100,000 tweets per day campaign produced from around 50,000 accounts. The accounts’ owners are allegedly linked to the extremist militant group Islamic State.

This unit will be run by Europol, the European police agency and will become operational from July 1st. The primary task of this police unit is to take down every single ISIS account within 2 hours of identification.

According to Rob Wainwright, director of Europol,the internet referral unit’s main job would be to monitor social media output and detect the targets and also the attacker. Wainwright stated:

“Who is it reaching out to young people, in particular, by social media, to get them to come, in the first place? It’s very difficult because of the dynamic nature of social media.”

Additionally, says Wainwright, the police unit would collaborate with social media firms to identify key accounts operating in a wide range of languages and are “underpinning what Isis are doing”.

The names of firms that have agreed to help Europol will not be disclosed. Moreover, Europol will also use network analytics to detect the most active twitter accounts for instance, those generating the maximum messages and/or those that are linked to a recognized online community.

The new initiative is inspired from Scotland Yard’s counter-terrorism internet-referral unit and the team hopes that this new strategy will help in awakening other nations and will boost efforts throughout Europe.

The supporters of ISIS/ISIL group are one of the most active users on social media. So active that some of them had compiled and leaked names, pictures and addresses of 100 U.S. military personnel urging its “brothers residing in America” to slay them.


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