'Technology and intelligence needs to fight terrorism'

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Mumbai, Sep 3: Curbing the transfer of technology and improving human intellegence are two ways through which law-enforcement agencies can snatch the initiative from terrorists, said an expert.

Speaking at the 'Terror and Technology in Society' seminar, organised by the Indian Merchants' Chamber (IMC) here yesterday, SRPF Commandant Brijesh Sing said the terrorists around the world were making full use of technology and the authorities were facing difficulty in tracing their movements, let alone tackle them.

He said groups, like the Jamia Islamia of Indonesia, were extremely technology intensive organisation with enough knowledge and resources to train other terrorist groups. In Kashmir, militants are known to use satellite phones for operations.

'They employ stealth, lethality, reach, tenacity and adaptibility that can be provided by technology. The ones that get caught are usually the cannon fodder, who have little knowledge about the workings of the organization,' he said.

Mr Sing said the enforcement agencies try and focus on the 'techies' within organizations who are the main resource behind terrorist attacks.

''The internet has made it easy for people to develop homemade weapons. They know how to make explosives from everyday items in the kitchen through the net. The police also unintentionally leak out information through the media and help terrorists learn from their mistakes.'' He said the counter-terrorism means could range from simple sand bags to high tech sensors that can locate explosives in moving vehicles. The best way to fight terrorists is still basic human intelligence.

'With human intelligence, we can know the 'who', 'where', 'how' and 'when' about strikes and take preventive measures. But right now, they know more about us than we know about them,'' he added.

IT expert Vijay Mukhi dispelled myths and falacies about wireless security and its vulnerability to attacks by carrying out a live demonstration of how terrorists could hack into a person's email account through Wi-Fi.

'Anyone within 300-500 ft of an unsecured wireless router can gain access to a person's account. This can also be done using any Wi-Fi enabled cell phone,' he said.

Mr Mukhi added one can secure Wi-Fi connections by purchasing Wi-Fi locators that could lessen the risk. Another solution, adopted by the West, is to instal an array of CCTVs to track the movements of people.

UNI

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