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ISIS operates a crypto help desk – report

If true, NBC may have identified an actual BOFH

Radical group ISIS is running a help desk to assist jihadists to use encrypted communications, NBC reports.

US Army Combating Terrorism Center (CTC) analyst Aaron F. Brantly says the help desk is a new development which has increased in capacity over the last year.

It is manned with six operatives who train recruits on the use of select messaging platforms to evade intelligence operatives.

"They've developed a series of different platforms in which they can train one another on digital security to avoid intelligence and law enforcement agencies for the explicit purpose of recruitment, propaganda and operational planning," Brantly told NBC.

"They answer questions from the technically mundane to the technically savvy."

The deranged sys admins are located around the world who hold a minimum university education in tech. Other members help keep the desk as a follow-the-sun operation, Brantly says.

The CTC holds some 300 pages on instances of the help desk providing operational security pointers to recruits.

Once the would-be jihadis are security savvy, they are connected to more senior operatives to engage in more formal training, Brantly says.

Help desk admins are also warning of the current wave of attacks in retaliation for the Paris attacks from the Anonymous collective, organised through the @opparisofficial Twitter handle.

Reports suggest advice is circulating to jihadis warning against opening suspicious links and suggesting regular IP address shuffles.

The collective has so far focused on taking down Daesh Twitter accounts and claims to have scalped more than 5000 by reporting them to the social network.

Encryption is once again coming under mis-directed fire in the wake of the Paris attacks as news emerges that intelligence services had wind of possible attacks in the French capital but were foiled as jihadis moved to crypto communications platforms. ®

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