Rory McKeown — Daily Star Oct 29, 2015
Andrew Parker, director general of the British Security Service, said the UK is at risk of a major attack after more than 750 British extremists travelled to Syria – and the threat shows “no sign of abating”.
He admitted six terror attacks on British soil had been thwarted in the last year – and several overseas.
The counter-intelligence agency had to carry out hacking attacks against terror groups to crack their communications, according to Mr Parker.
He was delivering the Lord Mayor of London’s annual defence and security lecture.
Mr Parker said the country is facing threats from at home, overseas and online.
He said: “It (ISIS) uses the full range of modern communications tools to spread its message of hate, and to inspire extremists, sometimes as young as their teens, to conduct attacks in whatever way they can.”
Mr Parker said a major chunk of the agency’s resources were working to stop terrorist attacks with an increasing amount linked to Syria and the ISIS.
He added: “More than 750 extremists from this country have travelled to Syria, and the growth in the threat shows no sign of abating.
“We are seeing plots against the UK directed by terrorists in Syria; enabled through contacts with terrorists in Syria; and inspired online by Isil’s sophisticated exploration of technology.”
He added: “All of this means that the threat we are facing today is on a scale and at a tempo that I have not seen before in my career.”
Mr Parker added: “We have thwarted six attempts at terrorist attacks in the UK in the last year, and several plots overseas.
“It may not yet have reached the high water mark, and despite the successes we have had, we can never be confident of stopping everything. The death of 31 British nationals in the Sousse attacks in June was an appalling reminder of the threat.”
In June as 30 Brits were killed as they sunbathed by a lone gunman Seifeddine Rezgui in the Tunisian holiday resort of Sousse.
The ISIS-inspired killer casually sailed to a seaside hotel and opened fire with his Kalashnikov rifle.
The attack sent shockwaves around the world and made the threat against tourists abroad a very reality.
He was speaking ahead of the controversial Powers Bill that aims to combat extremism and grant security officials greater powers to monitor communications data.
The current threat level for international terrorism in the UK is assessed by the MI5 as SEVERE.
Daily Star Online reported how ISIS could be planning a Christmas “terror spectacular” on UK soil.
Major cities like London, Birmingham and Manchester are more at risk of coming under attack during the festive season as the nation drops its guard when the party season gets underway.
And a lone wolf attack would be the most likely method.
The UK’s sovereign territories are on high alert over fears migrants will use them as a shortcut to Britain – including Jihadists.