The FBI, in conjunction with the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) has released their list of “Potential Indicators of Terrorist Activities Related to Internet Cafe” (sic). It may surprise you that your own Internet cafe activities render you suspicious. For example, if you attempt to shield your screen (like when, you know, you are entering a password?) you may be a terrorist. Or, if you travel an “illogical distance” to use an Internet cafe, you may be a terrorist. (We can’t help but hear Jeff Foxworthy’s voice as we read this list.) The list also includes suspicious computer activities and uses, as well as advice on what to do if you suspect that the guy next to you sipping his double light-foam mochaccino latte is a terrorist.
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Suspicious activities include “Evidence of a residential based internet provider (signs on to Comcast, AOL, etc.)” (well yeah, we consider using AOL suspect as well, but not evidence of being a terrorist), “Suspicious or coded writings, use of code word sheets, cryptic ledgers, etc.” (like, uh, C++ or HTML?), or “Suspicious communications using VOIP or communicating through a PC game” (meaning an entire generation of teenagers must be terrorists in training).
At the end of the one-page document (see below) is this light-hearted caution:
Note: It is important to remember that just because someone’s speech, actions, beliefs, appearance, or way of life is different, it does not mean that he or she is suspicious.
Talk about a paradox!
So what to do if you spot someone who you suspect of being a terrorist at an Internet cafe? The FBI and the BJA encourage you to, among other things, “Gather information about individuals without drawing attention to yourself.”
Here is the full document:
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