Terrorist groups use Facebook to recruit members


(Gather) According to Hoda Osman of cbsnews.com, Faisal Shahzad, the Times Square bomber as well as Umar Farouq Abdulmutallab, who was found guilty of attempting to blow up a plane traveling to the United States last December, both had Facebook accounts.

According to Unit Chief of the Counterterrorism Internet Targeting Unit Tom Osborne of the FBI, "Social networking sites certainly can and do provide a means to bring like minded individuals together, whether it is if for radicalization, recruitment or other terrorism objectives.”

Kamran Bokhari, Regional Director for the Middle East and South Asia for the global intelligence firm STRATFOR, stated al Qaeda was using Facebook to recruit terrorists.

In 2008, the Telegraph reported on a post on a terrorist web forum which encouraged their members to use Facebook. The anonymous source was quoted as saying, "We have already had great success in raiding YouTube and the next target is to invade Facebook."

Facebook insisted they had "a strict policy against content that promotes recognized terrorist organizations," but according to cbsnews.com, journalists discovered Facebook pages written in Arabic which supported terrorists. For example, a group called “Jihad in the way of God” with 1272 members which had a posting in Arabic mentioning bin Laden’s trip to Afghanistan. It said,” "Our aim is to destroy Mr. Idol (a reference to the U.S.” Bin Laden commented, "The Amir (of the Taliban) answered: 'Allahu Akbar (God is great)...destroying idols is our hobby.'"

FBI Chief Tom Osborne said, "The Internet is the virtual base that al Qaeda must use since many of their physical bases do not exist anymore.” He went on to say it provided "a sense of security and anonymity" and it was utilized to find terrorist supporters "from the relative security of your home computer."

Facebook has over 400 million users throughout the world, and it is apparently not able to keep up with reviewing the content posted on its website.

Are you thinking what I’m thinking? Isn’t the FBI able to work out a deal with Facebook to have access to hidden posts of suspected terrorists in order to catch them before they commit crimes? Hey out there, if anyone is a fluent speaker of Arabic and an American citizen, contact the FBI, it’s a good chance they’re hiring.

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