Global ef­forts aim to rid net of ter­ror

China Daily (USA) - - SHANGHAI | FOCUS - By ZHANG ZHI­HAO and CAO YIN in­Wuzhen, Zhe­jiang Con­tact the writ­ers at zhangzhi­hao@ chi­nadaily.com.cn and caoyin@chi­nadaily.com.cn

In­ter­na­tional co­op­er­a­tion, par­tic­u­larly among in­ter­net­based firms, is key to rid­ding on­line so­cial me­dia of ter­ror­ists and their ne­far­i­ous in­for­ma­tion, experts said at the thirdWorld In­ter­net Con­fer­ence on Thurs­day.

So­cial me­dia has be­come a “new haven and tool” for ter­ror­ist or­ga­ni­za­tions to spread harmful in­for­ma­tion as well as re­cruit, train and or­ga­nize at­tacks, said Wang Yong, a pro­fes­sor at the Peo­ple’s Pub­lic Se­cu­rity Univer­sity of China.

Agreed Li Wei, di­rec­tor of the In­sti­tute for Se­cu­rity and Arms Con­trol Stud­ies un­der the China In­sti­tute of Con­tem­po­rary In­ter­na­tional Re­la­tions. Ter­ror­ists are no longer mad men hid­ing in caves — they know how to take ad­van­tage of so­cial me­dia, he said.

“Ter­ror-re­lated in­for­ma­tion cir­cu­lat­ing on so­cial me­dia poses a big threat to the cybersecurity ofChina,” Li said.

China has 710 mil­lion in­ter­net users, and more than 656 mil­lion users ac­cess the in­ter­net via mo­bile phones, ac­cord­ing to the China In­ter­net Net­work In­for­ma­tion Cen­ter.

“The rapidly in­creas­ing ac­cess to the in­ter­net means more peo­ple also have ac­cess to so­cial me­dia,” Li said. With so many peo­ple trawl­ing the in­ter­net using cel­lu­lar phones, il­le­gal in­for­ma­tion can spread quickly across so­cial plat­forms and hand­held de­vices, mak­ing it harder to track down the cul­prits, he said.

Jia Yu, a pro­fes­sor at the North­west­Univer­sity of Pol­i­tics and Law, said on­line ter­ror­ist com­mu­ni­ties have learned to use proxy, en­cryp­tion and cloud data­bases to cover their ac­tiv­i­ties.

“Ter­ror­ists can post a video link from a cloud stor­age to a pass­word-pro­tected so­cial me­dia chat room with­out leav­ing phys­i­cal Jia said.

On­line in­ter­ac­tions like these typ­i­cally leave traces of meta­data, so it re­quires co­op­er­a­tion be­tween govern­ments and (so­cial me­dia) plat­form providers to mine the ev­i­dence out of big data, he said.

China has in­creased ef­forts to fight use of on­line me­dia for ter­ror-re­lated ac­tiv­i­ties in the past fewyears.

By the end of March, the China In­ter­net Il­le­gal In­for­ma­tion Re­port­ing Cen­ter had re­ceived some 20,000 ter­ror­ism-re­lated com­plaints. ev­i­dence,”

num­ber of in­ter­net users who ac­cess the net via their smart­phones in China

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