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European Union: “Tackling the dissemination of online terrorist content is a top priority”

European Commissioner for Security Sir Julian King announces, in a tribune to the “World”, the forthcoming publication of a European legislative proposal imposing on the platforms a series of standards to hinder ISIS’s propaganda on the Internet.

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Tribune. The threat that terrorism poses to Europe is indisputable – the memory of what I witnessed when I visited the scene of the attack in Nice two years ago is intact. Unfortunately, this tragic event is far from isolated. In recent years, Europe has been the target of many terrorist attacks – and France is one of the member states that have paid a heavy price with a total of 245 victims who died between 2015 and 2018 (Paris but also, Marseille, Trèbes , etc.).

In almost all cases, the perpetrators used the Internet to spread their hate message, to provide information on how to commit atrocities and to brag about their deadly results.

Member States remain at the forefront of the fight against terrorism, but the European Union (EU) also has a role to play in supporting and complementing action at national level, particularly when it comes to tackling online terrorist content, a problem that, by nature, transcends borders.

The link between the Internet and terrorism is evident, as the Islamic State (IS) organization has made the Internet a major propaganda tool. Despite its recent setback on the ground, its online propaganda activities do not seem to be weakening – nearly 700 new official IS messages were produced during the month of January alone.

Absolute priority

According to Europol, more than 150 online platforms – mostly established outside the EU – are being exploited to host terrorist-related content and facilitate its dissemination. These include businesses of any size ranging from simple hosting and file sharing services to traditional social media.

Another important point: the terrorist contents spread with extreme speed on the Web: three quarters of the links to the propaganda .

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