Internet firms are ruthless profiteers says Home Office Minister

Google and Facebook will help in fighting terrorism

Tech firms are indirectly costing the United Kingdom government millions in "human surveillance" of extremist content and should have a windfall tax levied against them to make up for it, according to security minister Ben Wallace.

"Because of encryption and because of radicalisation, the cost of that is heaped on law enforcement agencies", he added, referring to WhatsApp, which is owned by Facebook.

The government is also spending vast sums on counter-terrorism operations as well as on additional human surveillance to track down radicals and their followers. "It's costing hundreds of millions of pounds", said Wallace. "If they [internet firms] continue to be less than cooperative, we should look at things like tax as a way of incentivizing them or compensating for their inaction".

A London evening newspaper stand displays their headline outside Paddington tube station in London, after a terrorist incident was declared at Parsons Green subway station Friday, Sept. 15, 2017.

The UK's security minister Ben Wallace, speaking to The Sunday Times, accused the internet giants of being "ruthless profiteers" that fail to assist security services in their fight against extremism, which is at its worst "in the last 100 years". That's costing millions. They can't get away with that and we should look at all the options, including tax, ' he said.

We should stop pretending that because they sit on beanbags in T-shirts they are not ruthless profiteers.

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"We've invested millions of pounds in people and technology to identify and remove terrorist content". YouTube said it was a complex problem and was a challenging task for them to finish it so quickly.

The UK government has repeatedly warned tech companies that more needed to be done to tackle online extremism.

"2018 online is a time to deliver", says Wallace, "we know they can do more".

He said these companies should be charged tax penalties for not dealing with the threat if terrorism by removing radicle and sensitive data from their sites. That is for what he says is a failure to address the danger of the radicalization of people online. Suggesting that collaboration of the government and users is a necessity.

Pressure on tech companies from the United Kingdom government has increased in 2017, after five terror attacks in London and Manchester left 36 people dead and hundreds more injured.

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