Jihadi software promises secure Web contacts

Jihadi software promises secure Web contacts
Jihadi software promises secure Web contacts 

By Reuters
January 19, 2008

An Islamist Web site often used by al-Qaida supporters carried updated 
encryption software on Friday that it said would help Islamic militants 
communicate with greater security on the Internet.

The Mujahideen Secrets 2 was promoted as "the first Islamic program for 
secure communications through networks with the highest technical level 
of encoding."

The software, available for free on the password-protected 
site, which often carries al-Qaida messages, is a newer version of 
Mujahideen Secrets issued in early 2007 by the Global Islamic Media 
Front, an al-Qaida-linked Web-based group.

"This special edition of the software was developed and issued 
by...Ekhlaas in order to support the mujahideen (holy war fighters) in 
general and the (al-Qaida-linked group) Islamic State in Iraq in 
particular," the site said.

The efficacy of the new Arabic-language software to ensure secure e-mail 
and other communications could not be immediately gauged. But some 
security experts had warned that the wide distribution of its earlier 
version among Islamists and Arabic-speaking hackers could prove 

Al-Qaida supporters widely use the Internet to spread the group's 
statements through hundreds of Islamist sites where anyone can post 
messages. Al-Qaida-linked groups also set up their own sites, which 
frequently have to move after being shut by Internet service providers.

Al-Qaida's own media arm, As-Sahab, has become increasingly 
sophisticated in recent years. It issued 97 audio and video Web messages 
in 2007 compared with just 6 in 2002, according to IntelCenter, a 
U.S.-based group that monitors Islamist sites.

Al-Qaida and other groups have increasingly turned to the Internet to 
win young Muslims over to their fight against Western countries and 
Western-backed governments.

Story Copyright 2008 Reuters Limited. All rights reserved.

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