The Met Police in London tweeted Friday encouraging the public to “report suspicious online content or activity.”
— Metropolitan Police (@metpoliceuk) April 6, 2018
“As part of the ongoing ‘ACT – Action Counters Terrorism’ campaign, UK Counter Terrorism Policing is calling on the public to report any suspicious online content or activity,” Met Police said.
This specialist unit deals with “online terrorist material” and has removed “over 300,000 pieces of terrorist material” since 2010, also providing key evidence and information in 226 counter terrorism investigations.
“It’s vital that if the public see something online they think could be terrorist-related that they ACT and flag it up to us,” Commander Clarke Jarrett, head of the Counter Terrorism Command, said. “Our Counter Terrorist Internet Referral Unit (CTIRU) has specialist officers who not only take action to get content removed, but also, increasingly, are in a position to look at those behind online content – which is leading to more and more investigations.”
According to the Met, the majority of public referrals still relate to Islamist extremism, but they say they’ve has also seen “an increase over the past year in content related to extreme right-wing ideology,” and urge the public to report it.
“I would urge anyone who comes across what they think could be extremist or terrorist material – whether it’s right wing, Islamist or indeed any other form of extremism – to report it to us,” Commander Jarret said. “Our specialist officers can then assess the material and take appropriate action to potentially prevent further terrorist activity from happening.”
The definition of extremism could vary depending on who you ask. Let’s take a look at what a UK politician thinks. David Lammy, Labour MP for Tottenham, believed this post was a crime, and reported it to the Met Police.
The Met Police say a quarter of all public referrals since March 2017 related to “extreme right-wing material.”
“In previous years the CTIRU has been focused on getting terrorist content removed from the Internet,” The Met said. “But as their work and relationship with internet providers has developed to a point where more and more of the material is being removed automatically by the content providers themselves, the unit has been able to shift focus towards investigations.”