Library

Welcome to VOX-Pol’s Online Library, a research and teaching resource, which collects in one place a large volume of publications related to various aspects of violent online political extremism.

Our searchable database contains material in a variety of different formats including downloadable PDFs, videos, and audio files comprising e-books, book chapters, journal articles, research reports, policy documents and reports, and theses.

All open access material collected in the Library is easy to download. Where the publications are only accessible through subscription, the Library will take you to the publisher’s page from where you can access the material.

We will continue to add more material as it becomes available with the aim of making it the most comprehensive online Library in this field.

If you have any material you think belongs in the Library—whether your own or another authors—please contact us at onlinelibrary@voxpol.eu and we will consider adding it to the Library. It is also our aim to make the Library a truly inclusive multilingual facility and we thus welcome contributions in all languages.

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TitleYearAuthorTypeLinks
Thornton Statement Nottingham University Terrorism Arrests
2008 Thornton, R. Letter
Comments made by Dr Rod Thornton, Lecturer, School of Politics and International Relations, University of Nottingham on the events surrounding, and the repercussions of , the terrorism arrests at Nottingham University in May 2008
Terrorism and the Mass Media after Al Qaeda: A Change of Course?
2008 Torres Soriano, M.R. Journal
This article analyzes the possible relationship between terrorist groups and the media. As an example, a case study on the Al Qaeda organization will be used. Our methodology will involve analyzing the content of its public statements and examining the developments that have taken place during its history as an organization. Both perspectives suggest that terrorism’s view of the media, far from being composed of rigorous ideological or political principles, is shaped by their calculations of estimated opportunities. Its perception of the mass media, has depended on its perception of estimated media impact. This has determined three stages during its history: 1) Hostility toward media that it has held responsible for hiding or distorting its message; 2) Adaptation to a new environment where there are networks that are willing to interpret reality from a perspective similar to the jihadist point of view 3) Exploitation of the Internet as an indirect means of obtaining the mass media’s attention.
Manipulating And Hiding Terrorist Content On The Internet: Legal And Tradecraft Issues
2008 Williams, J.F., Urgo, M. and Burns, T. Article
The global war on terror (“GWOT”) is being fought on many levels. In addition to traditional terror and counterterror activity, both sides are engaged in a public relations and propaganda war, employing the media, willingly and unwillingly, to support their positions. Hovering over these war campaigns are information technologies, which include the Internet. This article provides an introduction to various online content concealing practices that have been employed by those seeking to conceal or limit access to information on the Internet, including terrorist organizations. Further, there is a discussion on tracking and monitoring of website visitors. After reviewing open source information and websites, this article examines techniques and technologies that are easily available to terrorist organizations -- foreign and domestic -- whose structure can be obtained through Internet websites. The article then turns to a discussion of the legal issues posed by active and passive website monitoring techniques.
Reducing The Threat Of Terrorism Through Knowledge Sharing In A Virtual Environment Between Law Enforcement And The Private Security Industry
2008 Gallagher, J.P. MA Thesis
Each day approximately 6,800 members of the private security workforce are deployed across Kansas City to provide protection services at venues, many of which have been identified as being critical infrastructure and/or key resources. While these guards are tasked with providing the first line of defense at these locations, there is currently no mechanism or protocol in place to facilitate the timely exchange of threat information between private security and the KCPD. To empower this resource as a terrorism prevention force multiplier the development of a web-based virtual knowledge-sharing initiative was explored in this study as a solution to provide “one-stop shopping” for consumers of homeland security-related needs from the private security industry. The factors measured in this study indicate that private security leaders perceived significant value in the proposed initiative and that the current environment is one that would favor success. One factor that supports this finding was the strong positive bias displayed to the “trust” factor, which was identified in this research as the lubricant of exchange relationships. While leaders did not demonstrate a high level of concern regarding the threat of a local terrorist act occurring in the next five years, the sharing of threat information did indicate that complacency could be reduced and the level of interest/value of participating be increased through the sharing of threat knowledge. Industry leaders also clearly indicated a universal belief that private security should have a role in the mission of countering terrorism to include critical infrastructure.
Studies into Violent Radicalisation: The Beliefs, Ideologies, and Narratives
2008 The Change Institute Report
This study explores the beliefs, narratives and ideologies that lead to violent radicalism underpinned by an abusive interpretation of Islam, with a view to understanding of the causes and remedies for violent radicalisation. The research was conducted through analysis and empirical data collection through 145 stakeholder and primary fieldwork interviews in four Member States; Denmark, France, Germany and the UK. The interview sample was intended to capture the diversity of the Muslim ‘field’ in each country as far as possible
New Zealand Government And Critical Infrastructure Ready Reaction To Cyber Terrorism
2008 Watt, A. C. MA Thesis
The purpose of this research is to obtain input from government agencies, elements of the critical infrastructure and cyber space, to determine what level of knowledge on cyber terrorism exists. Furthermore, are there ready reaction plans in place, and is staff-awareness training conducted on a regular basis? This probably won’t prevent or stop an attack of cyber terrorism, and like any other disaster in the IT world, if contingency planning exists, recovery can be quicker and greater mitigation of costs.

Interview questions were distributed to New Zealand government departments and elements that make up the critical infrastructure, to obtain an insight into the current situation. From this and other comparisons, inferences have been drawn to determine that if some of the groups were targeted would the fact that they could be deficient in knowledge on cyber terrorism, make the effect more intense and longer lasting. It has also provided the state of knowledge, the level of planning and the general readiness that currently exists.

In view of these findings recommendations have been made that will ensure there is consistency across all organisations, both government and nongovernment. All organisations, including the government, are reliant on the critical infrastructure and the internet for both operational and domestic survival. It is therefore pertinent that agencies give some consideration to these findings.
Online Terror and Hate: The First Decade
2008 Simon Wiesenthal Centre Report
The Internet’s unprecedented global reach and scope combined with the difficulty in monitoring and tracing communications make the Internet a prime tool for extremists and terrorists. The Simon Wiesenthal Center has been monitoring these developments for nearly two decades through our Digital Terrorism and Hate Project. Our findings reveal that as the Internet has grown, the escalation of extremist sites has kept pace in number and in technological sophistication.
Role Of Intelligence In Countering Terrorism on the Internet: Revisiting 3/11
2008 Díaz, G. and Merlos, A. Article
In this paper we argue that understanding terrorism within the new cyber environment of the twenty-first century is paramount for the intelligence services in the dawn of the 21st century. We believe that the intelligence services will have to confront this new trend in terrorism tactics in years to come whether they are fully prepared or not. This new type of threat will be one of the principal questions for intelligence services in the 21st Century.
Knowledge And Perceptions Of Cyberterrorism
2007 Van Hoogensty, A. J. MA Thesis
While the threat of terrorists utilizing the Internet to execute a cyberterrorist attack is of prominent concern there exist great misconceptions and factual errors in the media as to the nature of this threat (Conway, 2002; Embar-Seddon, 2002; Weimann, 2005). This thesis examined media exposure, knowledge of cyberterrorism, fear of terrorism and perceived seriousness of cyberterrorist events in a sample of college students. Generally, participants had little knowledge of cyberterrorism. Women were found to be more fearful of terrorism and cyberterrorism than men. A positive relation was found between media consumption and fear of terrorism among women. Finally, fear of terrorism was positively related to perceived seriousness of cyberterrorist events.
Framing Online Communications Of Civil And Uncivil Groups In Post Conflict Northern Ireland
2007 Reilly, P. PhD Thesis
This thesis explores the ways in which civil and uncivil groups in Northern Ireland use the Internet to generate soft power. This research assesses whether the Internet creates a critical multiplier effect for marginal groups, such as terrorists and interface communities. A coding scheme, adapted from previous studies of political part websites, is used to determine whether these groups have realised the potential of the Internet as a tool for political mobilisation. The dissertation considers whether there are any qualitative differences between the online framing of terrorist-linked parties and the constitutional parties in the region.
Ethical Principles in Social-Behavioural Research on Terrorism
2007 Bikson, T.K., Bluthenthal, R.N., Eden, R. and Gunn, P.P. Article
This RAND working paper documents the proceedings of a daylong workshop, "Ethical Principles in Social-Behavioral Research on Terrorism: Probing the Parameters." The workshop was convened to initiate a public discussion of the parameters that should guide the ethical conduct of social and behavioral research on terrorism that is frequently carried out in countries or among groups hostile to the United States. The workshop was organised into three sessions on the topics of "Deception and Concealment vs. Autonomy," "Maximizing Beneficence and Maintaining Justice," and "Ensuring Confidentiality." Each session included a main speaker followed by short presentations from an expert panel, a plenary discussion, and a wrap-up by the session chair. All proceedings were taped and transcribed. The transcriptions of the presentations by the speakers and panelists have been lightly edited to improve readability, as have the introductory and wrap-up comments by the workshop organisers. The transcriptions of the plenary discussions have been summarized to highlight the main points.
Islam, Jihad, and Terrorism in Post‐9/11 Arabic Discussion Boards
2007 Abdulla, R.A. Article
This study analyzed the contents of three of the most popular Arabic‐language online message boards regarding the attacks of September 11, 2001 on the United States. Although terrorists claimed that the attacks were committed in the name of Islam, those who posted messages on all three forums rejected this claim. More than 43% of the messages condemned the attacks as a criminal act of terrorism that contradicts the core teachings of Islam. Some 30% saw some justification behind the attacks, even if they felt sorry for the victims and their families. However, those participants viewed the attacks as a political, rather than a religious, issue.
Dschihadismus Im Internet
2007 Lohlker, Ü and Prucha, N. Journal
Dschihadismus als soziale Bewegung spiegelt sich auch im Internet wider. Diese Internetpräsenz ist im Wesentlichen arabischsprachig. Neben den eher theoretisch-ideologischen Webseiten gibt es auch ein breites Spektrum an Webpräsenzen, die sich mit technisch-praktischen Aspekten der dschihadis- tischen nicht-konventionellen Kriegsführung beschäftigen. Eine Analyse dieses Aspektes dschihadistischer Online-Aktivitäten ist erforderlich, um das Phänomen des Dschihadismus im Internet adäquat zu verstehen. Ein interessantes Mittel, ein solches Verständnis zu erreichen, ist die Erarbei- tung von flexiblen Begriffsrastern, die sich für die Forschung, die in diesem Artikel präsentiert wird, hauptsächlich auf Waffen, Explosivkörper und Konzepte des Guerillakrieges konzentrieren.
Gen E (Generation Extremist): The Significance of Youth Culture and New Media in Youth Extremism
2007 Lombard, K.J. Article
There are many computer programs that model the consequences to built infrastructure when subject to explosive blast loads; however, the majority of these do not account for the uncertainties associated with system response or blast loading. This paper describes new software - called "Blast-RF" (Blast Risks for Facades) - that incorporates existing blast-response software within an environment that considers threat/vulnerability uncertainties and variability via probability and structural reliability theory. This allows the prediction of likelihood and extent of damage and/or casualties; information which will be useful for risk mitigation considerations, emergency service's contingency and response planning, collateral damage estimation and post-blast forensic analysis.
Risk Of Cyberterrorism To Naval Ships Inport Naval Station Everett a model based project utilizing SIAM
2007 Tester, R. R. A. MA Thesis
Based on numerous high level concerns that the cyber threat is expected to increase, as well as the already documented uses of cyber warfare, it is necessary to ensure our naval ships are hardened against such attacks. In doing so, an influence net model was designed to discover the likelihood of a successful cyber attack. However, first it was necessary to establish what the best mitigation tools are in defense of cyber attack methods. In order to do so, an expert opinion survey was designed and completed by individuals currently working in the field of network security. In combination with the expert opinion surveys and in looking at research and established security techniques it should become apparent whether or not ships are taking all the required steps to best secure themselves against an attack. Though the initial model was designed around a theoretical Naval Station Everett ship, with modification the model can be utilized for any naval asset throughout the United States and the risk for each particular U.S. asset can be evaluated. Additionally, this tool can also facilitate security funding as well as establishing a means of prioritizing the tools for protection if the network needs to be hastily re-established after an attack. Ultimately, the protection of a ship’s computer networks against cyber terrorist threats is fundamental in ensuring continued effective command and control and ultimately the security of this nation.
Countering Militant Islamist Radicalisation on the Internet: A User Driven Strategy to Recover the Web
2007 Ryan, J. Book
A strategy to counter violent radicalisation on the Internet must be user driven, empowering Internet users with “cultural intelligence”. Cultural intelligence is essentially shorthand for an understanding of the key pillars of, and vulnerabilities inherent in, militant Islamist rhetoric. What this report calls “Enabling Stakeholders”, such as schools, and religious and community organisations, can disseminate this knowledge, thereby empowering Internet users to choose whether and how to challenge the call to violence.
Virtual Disputes: The Use of the Internet for Terrorist Debates
2007 Weimann, G. Journal
Terrorists are using the Internet for various purposes. Most of the attempts to monitor and study terrorist presence on the Net focused on the practical and communicative uses of this channel by modern terrorists. Yet, not much attention has been paid to the use of the Net as a medium for terrorist debates and disputes. This descriptive article presents this less noticed facet of terrorism on the Net by providing examples of virtual debates among and within terrorist groups. The analysis of the online controversies, disputes, and debates may say a lot about the mindsets of terrorists, their motivations, their doubts and fears. In many ways, it allows the researcher to open a window to a world about which so little is known. It may also serve counterterrorism: by learning the inner cleavages and debates one can find practical ways to support the voices against terror, to broaden gaps within these dangerous communities, and to channel the discourse to nonviolent forms of action.
Terrorism and the Making of the ‘New Middle East’: New Media Strategies of Hizbollah and al Qaeda
2007 Conway, M. Chapter
Chapter, "Terrorism and the making of the 'New Middle East'", in book: Seib, Philip, (ed.) New media and the new Middle East
Terrorism and New Media: the Cyber-Battlespace
2007 Conway, M. Chapter
Chapter, "Terrorism and new media: the cyber-battlespace", in book: Forest, James F., (ed.) Countering terrorism and insurgency in the 21st Century.
Cyberterrorism: Hype and Reality
2007 Conway, M. Chapter
Chapter "Cyberterrorism: hype and reality" in book: Armistead, Leigh, (ed.) Information warfare: separating hype from reality