Ranil warns social media becoming a global disruptive force

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe says technology driven new media including social media is a source of non-traditional threat in the world today.

The Prime Minister said that new media including social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter and other websites on the Internet are becoming global disruptive forces.

“We have seen the potential of this new media to destabilize nations and affect serious change in the case of countries like Tunisia, Libya, and Egypt etc,” the Prime Minister said.

He said this while speaking at the opening of the Colombo Defense Seminar 2018 today.

The Prime Minister said that the 21st century opens up an age facing an array of traditional and nontraditional security threats emanating from natural calamities, climate change, human exodus and displacement, violent non state actors, issues of ethnicity, newfangled ideology, religious radicalism and political activism, with most leading to the threat of violent extremism.

“Some of the other significant trends that are reshaping the future global arena includes the emergence of new economies and economic  rebalancing, competition for resources, cyber and space warfare, collective and artificial intelligence, demographic changes and urbanization, big data, power generation, robotic, mass manufacturing, technology and engineering as identified by the US Army’s training and doctrinal command. Development of these trends are even potential enough to outgun the most advance and sophisticated militaries in time to come and to deliver a new global order in the future,” he said.

The Prime Minister said that economy is progressively becoming the most decisive and influential factor in projecting the national power beyond the territorial limits of a nation state.

“On a different but a more realistic perspective the nature of warfare is shifting from physical to online, owing to the increased use of computers electromagnetic spectrum and artificial intelligence in commercial, economic military and all other cutting-edge activities. Critical services at risk from a cyber-assault include, but not limited to political, economic, financial, energy, transportation, security infrastructures where vulnerability management of cyber based systems has become an extremely demanding task in the face of innovative use of technology by the attackers. It is essential to apply the best practice approach to reduce national vulnerabilities immediately and to develop a robust cyber security system to prevent the disruptions by attackers with collaboration of all nation states,” he said.

Wickremesinghe said that multinational cooperation in all forms of affairs, particularly in the issues related to national and international security is essential due to the complex nature of threats developing against the humanity and mankind.