The UK is poised to announce October 10 a new law that could put viewers of terrorist content on the internet behind bars for up to 15 years.
Home Secretary Amber Rudd will explain the jail term will apply to those who repeatedly view such content as well as to those who publish information about members of the armed forces, police and intelligence services for the purpose of planning acts of terrorism.
The British audience for ISIS content online is the largest in Europe. According to the Home Office, since September 1, ISIS supporters published 67,000 tweets in English promoting their cause. Between January and August this year, more than 44,000 links to ISIS material were created and shared.
Rudd also recently announced a new national police hub dedicated to cracking down on internet trolls posting hate crimes online.
“We recognize and will uphold the right to free speech even where it causes offence – but this does not extend to inciting hatred or threatening people,” said National Police Chiefs’ Council lead for hate crime, Assistant-Chief Constable Mark Hamilton.
He added that the hub, which is projected to be operational by the end of the year, would “reduce the burden on frontline officers and help bring more offenders to justice.”