A top Aussie spook has emerged from his billabong to warn that the death of Osama bin Laden will not stop the growth of global terrorism and that the internet is going to be the new tool of choice.
Allan Gyngell, the director-general of Australia’s chief intelligence assessment agency, the Office of National Assessments, told the Sydney Morning Herald that the terrorists were about to fork off into a high tech direction.
He warned that the failure of western society to anticipate future change will usually turn out to be a “failure of imagination.”
Attorney-General, Robert McClelland added that post 2001, the West focused too much on tough terrorism laws and security measures instead of understanding why people became attracted to radical ideology.
He said that a counter-terrorism response needed to include broader strategies to lessen the appeal of extremist ideologies that fuel terrorism in the first place.
Gyngell said that geographic distance means less than it did in the 20th century – and cyber threats can come from anywhere.
Yemen and Somalia are increasingly concerning counter-terrorism experts as places where cyber attacks could come from.
Cyber spying including online theft and snooping from foreign intelligence agents is getting worse.
The next decade will be the age of the cyber spy, he said.