May 23, 2019

SL needs advanced tech to face modern terror threats - Patali Featured

Megapolis and Western Development Minister Patali Champika said that when an issue arises the only solution is not just to block social media but a big data platform is needed to detect such threats. He said Big data platform is a type of IT solution that combines the features and capabilities of several big data application and utilities within a single solution.

“In the US they use a big data platform known as Prism. All communication worldwide goes through this platform, where every user is categorised. It then identifies the likes and interests of each user and sends cookies to that user based on their various attributes. What we are doing is a primitive move in blocking social media the moment an issue arises.

However, what we ideally should be doing is to have a big data platform to monitor such social media sites. If that was done, the moment some offensive message is communicated through social media, the authorities could be alerted and measures could be taken to prevent any incident. This way the government would invariably be ahead. However, by blocking social media it brings no benefit because people immediately access these sites through VPN,” he noted.

Minister Ranawaka noted that the current terror threat cannot be suppressed in the same manner that the government dealt with the LTTE. He said the LTTE was a real time physical presence and the security forces were aware of where they were and could engage them face to face. However, in today’s situation there is no grouping as these terrorists are part of an individual jihadist grouping and come together only to carry out a chosen task.

He warned that in the future, individual jihadists could launch any individual attack without any warning. Therefore, he said that the government needs to understand the modern trends and dangers and be prepared for such threats in today’s context. Technology has developed and the modern terrorists are making use of this technology in their operations. Hence, he said if Sri Lanka is to be one step ahead and be prepared for such threats, the government needs to be up to date with such modern technologies.

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