Mar 27, 2017

U.K. slams tech companies for giving terrorists 'place to hide'

John Stillwell / PA via AP

British officials are slamming technology companies for allegedly profiting from terrorist propaganda and offering secret places to communicate, reports the WSJ. Following the London terrorist attack last week, reports have surfaced that the attacker, Khalid Masood, was using WhatsApp — which activated end-to-end encryption last year — in the minutes leading up to the attack. Since then, officials have been working to determine whether Masood was influenced online.

"There should be no place for terrorists to hide," Home Secretary Amber Rudd told the BBC Sunday. "We need to make sure that organizations like WhatsApp, and there are plenty of others like that, don't provide a secret place for terrorists to communicate with each other."

Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson also weighed in on the debate, noting to the Sunday Times that it was "disgusting" that tech companies were profiting from ads placed next to extremist material online. His remarks follow the criticism surrounding Google for having its ads run alongside extremist content, which has resulted in a series of companies pulling their ads from the site.

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