Global Internet Forum to Counter Terrorism has first meeting Aug. 1

The following announcement was jointly written by Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and Microsoft and posted to our respective online properties.

The Global Internet Forum to Counter Terrorism is holding its first workshop on Aug. 1, 2017 in San Francisco, where representatives from the tech industry, government and nongovernmental organizations are coming together to share information and best practices about how to counter the threat of terrorist content online.

Formed last month by Facebook, Microsoft, Twitter and YouTube, the Global Internet Forum to Counter Terrorism formalizes and structures how our companies work together to curtail the spread of terrorism and violent extremism on our hosted consumer services. Building on the work started within the European Union Internet Forum and the shared industry hash database, the GIFCT is fostering collaboration with smaller tech companies, civil society groups and academics and governments.

In addition to the founding companies of the GIFCT, more than two dozen other technology companies and nongovernmental organizations  will be participating in the Aug. 1 meeting. We also welcome United Kingdom Home Secretary Amber Rudd and United States Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Elaine Duke  as well as representatives from Australia, Canada, the European Union and the United Nations — to discuss mutual areas of cooperation.

At Tuesday’s meeting we will be formalizing our goals for collaboration and identifying with smaller companies specific areas of support needed as part of the GIFCT’s work plan. Our mission is to substantially disrupt terrorists’ ability to use the internet in furthering their causes, while also respecting human rights. This disruption includes addressing the promotion of terrorism, dissemination of propaganda and the exploitation of real-world events through online platforms. To achieve this, we will join forces around three strategies:

  • Employing and leveraging technology
  • Sharing knowledge, information and best practices, and
  • Conducting and funding research.

In the next several months, we also aim to achieve the following:

  • Secure the participation of five additional companies to the industry hash-sharing database for violent terrorist imagery; two of which have already joined: Snap Inc. and
  • Reach 50 companies to share best practices on how to counter terrorism online through the Tech Against Terrorism project in partnership with ICT4Peace and the U.N. Counter Terrorism Executive Directorate.
  • Conduct four knowledge-sharing workshops — starting in San Francisco today, with plans for further meetings later this year in other locations around the world.

We believe that the best approach to tackling online terrorism is to collaborate with each other and with others, including civil society and government. We look forward to further cooperation as we develop a joint strategic plan over time.


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