WASHINGTON, June 3 (Sputnik) — During testimony to the US House Homeland Security Committee, Michael Steinbach said:
“[There is] probably a neighborhood of a couple thousand core users, propagandists pushing that message out, then probably another 50,000 individuals retweeting that message, and then upwards of 200,000 receiving that message.”
The Islamic State is considered to be the most adept terrorist group employing social media, including major US social media platforms, according to US intelligence agencies.
ISIL propagandists aim to inspire attacks on western targets by recruiting jihadis to fight abroad or receive training and return home to carry out attacks.
The FBI estimates “upwards of 200 Americans have traveled or attempted to travel to Syria to join extremist groups,” Steinbach said in his testimony.
He added that the terrorist recruitment threats “remain among the highest priorities for the FBI and the Intelligence Community as a whole.”
On May 4, two men were killed by US law enforcement after launching an armed attack on a Garland, Texas event featuring controversial cartoons of the Muslim Prophet Mohammed.
On Tuesday, the FBI interrupted another plot against law enforcement authorities in Boston, Massachusetts by an individual with alleged ties to the Islamic State group. Boston police shot the suspect and detained another suspect believed to be tied to the plot.