Schumer: Terrorists using social media to recruit lone wolves

Jan 5, 2016

Sen. Charles Schumer, Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren and Rochester Police Chief Mike Ciminelli Tuesday in downtown Rochester.
Credit Alex Crichton / WXXI News

Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) says terrorist organizations are using social media to recruit members, so the federal government must double down on its efforts to monitor their online recruiting methods.

He was in Rochester Tuesday to push for passage of the Combat Terrorist Use of Social Media Act, which has already passed the House.

Schumer says he would work to create a bipartisan coalition to pass the bill in the Senate, which will  improve the way the federal government deciphers, disrupts and decodes the rapidly evolving social media techniques of terrorist organizations.

"We're living in an age where we're seeing a rapid rise in terrorists using social media to radicalize and recruit disaffected Americans here at home, so we have to double down on our efforts to stay ahead of this curve."

Schumer is applauding efforts by law enforcement in apprehending a terror suspect in Rochester last week, Emanuel Lutchman , and earlier this year, Mufid Elfgeeh, who has admitted to recruiting for ISIS.

But he says Congress needs to pass legislation that would refine our strategy to better screen social media activity, in order to ensure the safety of everyone in the United States.

Schumer also announced that according to the FBI, at this point in time, there is no credible threat of terrorism here in the Rochester area. But he adds Americans must remain vigilant.