Monday, July 16, 2007
Imagine this scenario: English police capture three Muslims involved in stealing millions of dollars via computer scams. At the same time, they are creating jihadi videos and suicide websites for Muslim fanatics online.
Three Worked the Web to Help Terrorists
The global jihad landed in Linda Spence's e-mail inbox during the summer of 2003, in the form of a message urging her to verify her eBay account information. The 35-year-old New Jersey resident clicked on the link included in the message, which took her to a counterfeit eBay site where she entered personal financial information.
Spence's information wound up in the hands of a man in Britain who investigators say was the brains behind a cell that sought to facilitate bombings in the United States, Europe and the Middle East.
Investigators say Spence's stolen data made its way via the Internet black market for stolen identities to a 21-year-old biochemistry student, Tariq al-Daour, one of three British residents who pleaded guilty this week to using the Internet to incite murder.
Much has been written about how radical Islamic groups use the Internet to distribute propaganda and recruit members. The British investigation, however, revealed a significant link between Islamic terrorist groups and cyber-crime, and experts say security officials must do more to understand and confront cyber-crime as part of any overall strategy for combating terrorism.
Investigators in the United States and Britain say the three used computer viruses and stolen credit card accounts to set up a network of communication forums and Web sites that hosted such things as tutorials on computer hacking and bomb-making, and videos of beheadings and suicide bombings in Iraq.
Authorities say one of the men, Waseem Mughal, a 24-year-old law student, was found with a computer containing a 26-minute video that included instructions in Arabic for preparing a suicide-bomb vest and a recipe for improvised explosives.
The third and perhaps best-known of the group, Moroccan-born Younes Tsouli, 23, became adept at setting up sites to host huge video files and other propaganda. Investigators said he became the de facto administrator of the online jihadist forum Muntada al-Ansar al-Islami, which once was the main Internet public relations mouthpiece of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the leader of al-Qaeda in Iraq who was killed last month.
Well, they were captured. End of story, right?
Not so fast! Because in a move considered stupider than electing Hillary Clinton as President, the UK government gave these three terrorists...can you guess? computers! In prison! And guess what they did with them!
EXCLUSIVE: TERROR CELL
AN al-Qaeda fanatic jailed for inciting murder online was caught making a website urging terror attacks - from his cell in Britain's most secure prison.
Tariq Al-Daour, 21, used a smuggled mobile phone and modem lead to access the internet on a laptop issued by the Prison Service to help him prepare his court case.
The laptop was seized after a violent struggle when prison officers suspected he was misusing it and the hate-filled website called Global Jihad was found.
The Home Office has launched an urgent inquiry to discover how the mobile was smuggled into Belmarsh's High Security Unit, which holds the country's most dangerous inmates.
They fear Al-Daour may have used it to contact other al-Qaeda terrorists and are scrutinising calls he made.
A senior prison source said yesterday: "It is frightening that an al-Qaeda prisoner was able to build an extremist website within Britain's supposedly most secure jail.
"This is a massive security breach. It's a real wake-up call.
"The fact he was inside for building terror websites means he should have been watched like a hawk.
"A mobile phone should never have managed to end up in the High Security Unit in the first place.
"Prisoners are strip-searched when they enter and leave. The fear is a corrupt member of staff got the phone in."
Al-Daour's website - built while he was on trial - was full of al-Qaeda propaganda calling on extremists to wage war on the West.
The source said: "The website was not finished, but it wasn't far off.
"He must have been working on it for some time as there were a lot of pages and text. It is staggering that he was able to work undetected."
Cell phones? Computers? For terrorists in prison? What fucking idiots are running the British government?