27 February 2018
While academics and lawyers interviewed by TODAY welcomed the proposal to expand the police’s powers during serious security incidents, including the authority to stop all forms of communication that may compromise operations, they said that putting these new laws into practice would be tricky.
Dr Kumar Ramakrishna, who specialises in counter-terrorism strategy at the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS), pointed to how social media posts had interfered with security operations in cases such as the siege at Lindt Cafe in Australia in December 2014. Speculation was rife on Twitter then and online users were sharing videos of hostages held inside the Sydney cafe. Hostages had also used social media to communicate the demands of their hostage-taker.
Dr Ramakrishna, who coordinates the school’s National Security Studies Programme, agreed that the communications stop order “makes sense” to give security forces more powers to ensure successful operations, and their work can be adversely affected if “just two or three people” post footage of tactical operations online.
NSSP / Online
Last updated on 28/02/2018