Friday, March 30, 2007

Cyber Traps for Wannabe Jihadists

I guess that's what happens when you don't have a single clue on where the real conversation and recruitment is happening, so you decide to create your own controlled jihadi communities to monitor. A case study on false feeling of effectiveness in Australia :

"FEDERAL police are setting up bogus jihadist websites to track extremists who use cyberspace to recruit followers and plan attacks. The undercover operation, disclosed yesterday by Australian Federal Police Commissioner Mick Keelty, is an assault on arguably the most powerful weapon of the global jihadist movement, the internet. Mr Keelty said police were working closely with foreign governments and the military's Defence Signals Directorate. "We have worked with some foreign countries through our undercover program, establishing our own websites, to capture some of the activities that are going on on the internet," he told a security conference in Sydney."

"Some of the activities" will have absolutely nothing to do with the real situation, and even if someone bothers to open up a discussion on your second hand jihadi site, it'll be a classic example of a moron. Fighting for a share of the online jihadi traffic is so unpragmatic, unnecessary, time and resource consuming that you'd better rethink the entire idea, emphasize on intelligence data sharing with other countries in case you cannot monitor the emergence of local communications, and keep an eye on them.

Meanwhile, a talk on the street is heating up :
- Hello underaged kids, I see you're having trouble getting hold of some quality Russian vodka over here in front of that store, I can probably give you hand with this?
- Yes, please, please!!!
- Aha! Agent Temptation from the Thought Police here, you're busted for desiring to drink alcohol even without drinking it! Put your tongues on your head so I can see them!

In the long term we may actually have a real-life bomber confessing of visiting online jihad community before the plot took place, that, ooops, happens to be one of the fake ones. Now we have double ooops. Many other related posts to provide you with an overview of the big picture and a countless number of budget allocation myopia failures that emphasize on technological approaches to detecting radical jihadi propaganda, whereas cyber jihadists and future terrorists are getting efficient in generating "noise sites", ones your crawlers are so good at picking up.