LONE WOLF ATTACK
Sept the 11th, 2001, was a defining moment in the history of terrorism & of the modern world. The trajectory terrorism has taken since then has defied all rational explanation & also imagination. From group of highly motivated, well guided, based on a neat plan transforming an aircraft into a missile, wrecking the worst terror attack is all well documented & too well known. The most recent in the series being the just concluded lone wolf attack in New York. From an organised group to a single individual & using vehicle as a weapon seems to be the latest trend. The recent terrorist incidents of Nice, London & Las Vegas fully substantiate this mode.
If investigation into these terrorist incidents are to go by, the individual terrorists had no criminal record, behaviour not sufficient enough to raise suspicion in the community & no intercepted communication on any mode to make surveillance a necessity on each of these individuals. But to accept that all such meticulous attacks happened out of the blue leaving no trace behind while preparing for it, is a over simplistic preposition. Undeniably, they have hoodwinked law enforcement agencies.
With huge amount of technical prowess, expertise & experience behind them, the US Intelligence seems to have wherewithal for the task they are mandated to do. Their failure can be attributed to two reasons, one the its humongous nature & the second the Dark Net. Termed as the criminal backwaters of the Internet, the Dark Net provides the communication channels generally beyond the reach of law enforcement agencies. Encrypted communications has added an insurmountable factor in interception. FBI Vs Apple case is still fresh to us.
At the heart of it would remain the privacy Vs security debate, a universal protocol accepted to one & all, legally valid. There is no denying the fact that even lone wolf’s get into this mode through well established radicalisation process & at times one to one. Cracking the Dark Net riddle is the key to it.
WELL THOUGHT OUT TECHNICAL INTERCEPTION IS THE WAY FORWARD.