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Second Life & WoW Terrorist Training Camps? 292

Tech.Luver writes "theinquirer reports that 'Aussie Security experts claim that Second Life and online games such as World of Warcraft are being used to train terrorists. Apparently there are three jihadi terrorists registered and two elite jihadist terrorist groups in Second Life and they use the site for recruiting and training. This is on top of the Second Life Liberation Army.""
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Second Life & WoW Terrorist Training Camps?

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  • OMG (Score:5, Interesting)

    by ruiner13 ( 527499 ) on Wednesday August 01, 2007 @09:47AM (#20069901) Homepage
    Wow, and you know what? There are even MORE terrorists training in this thing we call "real life"! Can you believe it? We'd better end this thing called life before they have a chance to do something!

    All kidding aside, I bet there are "terrorists" using any form of communication that is there. Unless we live completely isolationist lives, never being allowed to interact with anyone, ever, people are going to *gasp* get together and talk about things, including terrorism. Focusing on video games is just stupid and a colossal waste of time.
  • Re:ROFLMAO (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Cheesey ( 70139 ) on Wednesday August 01, 2007 @10:24AM (#20070405)
    Homeland Security are way ahead of you []. Only a terrorist would object to being forced to run official spyware!
  • Re:Eh. (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Sobrique ( 543255 ) on Wednesday August 01, 2007 @10:50AM (#20070813) Homepage
    I have to say though, something like EVE actually has a certain amount of bearing on real life. Leadership skills, tactical thinking, and organisation/logistics have real bearing on in game warfare.

    I'd actually be tempted to suggest that 'have run an effective corp in EVE' is worthy to go on the CV/Resume. At least, if it didn't automatically get you disqualified for being 'yet another MMO junkie'

  • by ocbwilg ( 259828 ) on Wednesday August 01, 2007 @02:39PM (#20075213)
    I just read the entire article from The Australian, and it was only slightly less amusingly inaccurate than the WoW quote from Kevin Zuccato. Unfortunately the "amusingly inaccurate" has quickly turned into frightening. Doesn't it scare you that someone who is in a position of political power and responsibility in "the war on terror" is willing to put their name next to such a laughably inaccurate statement? Is he truly that stupid, or is he just too lazy to bother checking facts? For that matter, what about his staffers? Or the reporter who took the quote, or the editor who gave it the OK for publishing? I mean, we're only talking about the most popular online game in the world here, I'm sure that there must have been an intern somewhere who's played it.

    Unfortunately, the lack of critical thinking didn't stop at the thought of sword-wielding orcs on gryphons attacking government buildings, the bits on Second Life weren't much better.

    The arguments basically come down to two things:

    1. They can launder money through Second Life.
    2. They can create elaborate simulations of locations in Second Life with which to practice operations.

    The problems with #2 are mostly obvious, i.e., you can't just whip up an accurate model of a government installation (or even a public location) without detailed information about that facility. That means lots of reconaissance, collation of data, etc. If you have all of the info needed to create a realistic simulation in Second Life, then you have all of the info needed to create a realistic simulation in any other environment/medium as well. The issue isn't Second Life, it's the recon data that the terrorists presumably would have. But the reality is that such data is hard to come by, at least in quantities sufficient to be truly useful. So we can just whip out the magical Internet box to fill in the blanks, and suddenly Second Life has gone from being a stupid waste of time to being a Terrorist Training Simulator (TM).

    Argument #1 actually does hold some water. It would certainly be possible to use Second Life to transfer funds from individuals in one location to another, or to even launder funds. But anything of the sort would have to happen in a very limited fashion on a very limited scale. Transferring $20,000 via Second Life is bound to attract a lot of attention. Transferring smaller amounts of money would probably be more successful, but also a lot less useful. And frankly, I'm not seeing Second Life as being any easier or more likely to be used for money laundering/xfers than other services like PayPal. But you know, it's that magical Internet box again so critical thinking has to go out the window.

    As to "three jihadi terrorists registered and two elite jihadist terrorist groups in Second Life", one has to wonder a little. What makes them elite jihadist groups as opposed to regular jihadist groups? Do they hog all the dungeon raids or something, or does it just make things sound scarier? And how to they know that there are three jihadi terrorists registered? Are they really jihadi terrorists who are trying to recruit for real-world damage? Or are they pimple-faced 14-year olds who just want to smash up bits of peoples' online virtual worlds and are role-playing terrorists as part of "the game"? After all, I doubt that the people playing as prostitutes in Second Life are actually really prostitutes. For that matter, I am confident that most of the "women" in Second Life are actually men, but I doubt that any significant portion of them are transvestites or transexuals.

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