British experts have warned that Britain could be exposed to a wave of terrorist attacks, known as “lone wolf”, by “bedroom radicals”, a term that has come to describe people who have been exposed to extremism online, while they are isolated in their homes during the lockdown because of Corona.
It comes as police are investigating whether the 25-year-old terror suspect, who was arrested on suspicion of murdering Conservative MP Sir David Amis, has radicalized online due to the pandemic.
A security source said, “Counter-terrorism police and MI5 have been worried for some time that once we get out of the lockdown there will be more people on the streets and more targets for terrorists.”
“Besides the fact that a lot of young people are spending a lot of time online, that’s a very worrying combination and there is real concern about the potential rise of bedroom radicals,” he added.
It is now feared that extremists around the world will seek to energize their recruits and encourage them to carry out terrorist strikes across the UK.
Discovering “lone wolf” would require security services to infiltrate online forums where they are located and work, said Peter Neumann, professor of security studies.
“It’s very rare that they are completely isolated,” he said.
Lots of lone attackers interact with people, albeit online, so they socialize with others.
“No terrorist does this only for himself – they want endorsement and admiration, and that admiration is often from people they meet online who they imagine will be the public for their actions,” he added.
“I think the security services should imagine the online world as a place even though it is difficult to distinguish between who is violent and who is not”