Conflict continues to be the primary driver of terrorist activity for the countries most impacted by terrorism, according to the 2020 Global Terrorism Index.
WHAT IS TERRORISM?
Watch the video below to help you make sense of the issue of international terrorism. You should answer the questions that appear in the video:
drawing conclusions from evidence
Take a look at the graphs in the video below. What additional conclusions can you draw from the graphs which have been taken from the 2020 Global Terrorism Index? This task will help you to frame the issue of international terrorism:
In order to understand the motivations of the most deadly international terror groups, you should now access some reading material. Click on the image below to take you to a flippable ebook. Complex terms and vocabulary are hyperlinked to definition and pronunciation guides, video content is also embedded. This task will help you to focus on and frame the issue of international terrorism:
THE GLOBAL TERRORISM INDEX
The Global Terrorism Index is produced by the Institute for Economics & Peace (IEP), ranks 163 countries (99.7% of the world’s population) according to 23 qualitative and quantitative indicators of peace.
Take a look at the GTI 2020 infographic below (Click on the image to open a pdf version. The statistics below the map are clearer when downloaded.) What conclusions can you draw about levels of terrorism based on region? What do you think links these regions and countries most impacted by terrorism? Think about political systems (democracy/authoritarian government/monarchy etc), natural resources, human rights records, etc. Why do you think that some countries have very low levels of terrorism? By considering these questions and ideas you will be able to deepen your understanding of the issue of international terrorism:
If you are interested in looking at case studies of the 10 countries most impacted by terrorism, click on the links in the graphic below. Click through all 10 using the arrow on the right of the maps. Try to uncover any similarities between the 10 countries. Consider social, political, economic, military, religious factors among others. This task will help to frame the issue of international terrorism:
Click through the map videos below to read more about the countries most impact by international terrorism. Clicking on the name of each country will lead you to a fact sheet. What assumptions can you make after reading this material in terms of causes of terrorism?
Read the passage that follows about cyber terrorism. This task will help you to understand that the issue of international terrorism comes in multiple forms and this will assist you in making sense of the issue. Look for logical connections between ideas and try to draw a conclusion – consider all of the answer choices and identify the one which draws a conclusion most closely from the passage. Drawing conclusions is the ability to pull together a range of information and arrive at a logical conclusion based on the evidence.
Governments are becoming increasingly reliant on technology in order to create more efficient and streamlined infrastructures. It is the case that as terrorist groups develop, receive funding from state actors, or seek to disrupt a government system in order to create chaos and bring leaders and states to their knees, cyberterrorism can be an attractive offensive strategy.
Even though cyberterrorism is not physically violent in nature, it can cause significant damage to governments and citizens alike.
Targets of cyberterrorism can be industrial control systems, nuclear power stations, or as was experienced in May 2017, an attack on the National Health Service and FedEx.
This global cyberattack was dubbed ‘Wannacry’/ ‘WanaCypt0r 2.0’/ ‘WCry’ and infected 300,000 computers mainly in Russia, Taiwan, Ukraine and India.
This particular cyber terror attack was delivered by a virus-filled email which released malware onto computer systems in a technique known as phishing. The virus encrypts files on the infected computer and the cyberterrorists demand payment in Bitcoin to release files and for the user to regain access. This perhaps explains why Mikko Hypponen, chief research officer at the Helsinki-based cybersecurity company F-Secure, called the Wannacry attack "the biggest ransomware outbreak in history."
In the UK, the NHS was targeted by Wannacry. This resulted in administrative chaos as patient files and other confidential documents were encrypted by the malware virus. People were advised to only seek medical assistance in emergencies due to the service’s inability to process patients. Thousands of operations and other appointments were cancelled, and ransoms were demanded to restore access. The social cost to people’s health is patent. The economic cost is also evident as figures revealed by the Department of Health and Social Care showed a total cost of £92m to the NHS.
In April 2017 a North Korean man, Park Jin Hyok, was identified as being behind the cyberattack. He was a member of the state-sponsored ‘Lazarus Group’ which is also thought to be responsible for a similar cyberattack on Sony Pictures in 2014.
Another example of cyberterrorism was seen in relation to a group known as the Pakistani Cyber Army. This group, which does not claim to be a terror or hacking group, has been known to target Indian, Chinese, and Israeli companies and governmental organisations.
The Pakistani Cyber Army are motivated by Pakistani nationalism and Islam. Members of this group have claimed responsibility for the hijacking of websites belonging to Acer, Indian telecommunications company, BSNL, India's Central Bureau of Investigation, Central Bank, and the State Government of Kerala.
Select the correct conclusion about the text from the list below:
Cyber terrorism is the biggest threat to international security.
North Korea is responsible for many cyber terror attacks.
Cyber terrorists target government organisations.
Cyber terrorism is used to disrupt organisations and sometimes elicit money.