A masked man speaking in what is believed to be a North American accent in a video that Islamic State militants released in September 2014 is pictured in this still frame from video obtained by Reuters (REUTERS/FBI).


We Shouldn't Stop Terrorists from Tweeting

October 9, 2014, Daniel L. Byman and Jeremy Shapiro

Much has been said about how adept the Islamic State is at using social media to disseminate its propaganda and recruit fighters, particularly in the West. Some believe that shutting down the accounts of terrorists and otherwise restricting their access to social media is an important step in countering the reach and influence of the group. However, Daniel L. Byman and Jeremy Shapiro argue that the use of  social media by the Islamic State and their supporters provides intelligence services with valuable information that can be used to track fighters and disrupt the group's operations. 

View All Research on Intelligence ›Show 10 More