Terrorists in cyberspace are increasingly utilizing social media to promote their ideologies, recruit new members, and justify terrorist attacks and actions. This study explores the ways in which types of social media, message contents, and motives for spreading propaganda take shape in cyberspace. In order to empirically test these relations, we created a dataset with annual terrorism reports from 2011 to 2016. In our global cyberterrorism dataset, we used and connected cyber-resources (Facebook, online forum, Twitter mentions, websites, and YouTube videos) and legal documents of individual cases that were mentioned in the reports. The results show that YouTube videos were used primarily for propagating certain ideologies and for recruiting members for Al Qaeda and ISIS. Al Qaeda-affiliated cyberterrorists used YouTube videos as both individual sources and embedded sources for Facebook and Twitter, whereas ISIS-affiliated cyberterrorists predominantly used YouTube videos and Twitter posts.
Choi, Kyung-shick; Lee, Claire Seungeun; and Cadigan, Robert
"Spreading Propaganda in Cyberspace: Comparing Cyber-Resource Usage of Al Qaeda and ISIS,"
International Journal of Cybersecurity Intelligence & Cybercrime: 1(1), 21-39.
Available at: https://vc.bridgew.edu/ijcic/vol1/iss1/4
Copyright © 2018 Kyung-shick Choi, Claire Seungeun Lee, and Robert Cadigan