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“Let’s Talk About It”: Prevent online radicalisation during Covid-19 lockdown

Last modified: 16 April 2020 at 04:47pm

North Yorkshire Police and our community safety partners are supporting a campaign to tackle the threat of online radicalisation during the coronavirus emergency.

Co-ordinated by Prevent and with a focus on its “Let’s Talk About It” website https://www.ltai.info/, it is aimed at young and vulnerable people who could be at risk of being groomed by extremist individuals and groups online.

As with crimes such as fraud, child abuse and child sexual exploitation, the closure of schools and colleges has increased the chances of young people falling victim to online radicalisation while following the current social distancing and self-isolation rules.

Detective Superintendent Allan Harder, Head of Safeguarding at North Yorkshire Police, said: “During the coronavirus pandemic when we are all becoming more reliant on communicating online, it is essential to be aware of the dangers of online radicalisation and where professional help and support can be readily accessed.

“While such cases are rare, it is still important for parents, carers and young people themselves to be aware of the negative influencers and groomers who use the internet, social media and online gaming to spread extreme ideas.

“Some of these ideas may be considered radical or extreme, and when a person starts to support or be involved in them, this is called radicalisation which is a very serious matter for the police.”

If you are worried about a friend, relative or even yourself, please go to the Prevent “Let’s Talk About It” website https://www.ltai.info/.

If you have an immediate concern that you need to share with a trained professional who will treat your enquiry with understanding and discretion, please call North Yorkshire Police on 101.

Follow @TerrorismPolice and @NypPrevent on Twitter to keep up to date on Prevent activities.

If you see or hear something suspicious, trust your instincts and ACT. Report it in confidence at www.gov.uk/ACT. Your actions could save lives.

Background on Prevent

Since the Prevent Strategy was introduced in 2006, the UK Police Service has played a vital role in stopping people getting drawn into terrorism and violent extremism by helping to support the vulnerable.

This unique contribution has been essential in boosting the UK’s ability to counter the threat posed by terrorists, whilst at the same time helping build stronger and safer neighbourhoods.

Our work under Prevent builds on existing strong relationships between police and professionals involved in other safeguarding work such as sexual abuse, neglect and other risks.

More recently, we have begun work to encourage business leaders to understand the objectives and importance of Prevent, and how they can contribute.

Our statistics demonstrate that our work under Prevent covers all communities and all forms of extremist activity, including extreme right wing behaviour.

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