New study proposes measures to combat cyberterrorism in Metaverse

Anti-Israel hackers
Anti-Israel hackers Abed Rahim Khatib/Flash 90

By  Israel National News  Published:  Aug 3, 2023, 10:59 AM (GMT+3)

University of Haifa’s Prof. Gabriel Weimann suggests ways NGOs and law enforcement officials can prevent digital terror across the platform.

In a newly-published study, leading Israeli expert on cyberterrorism Dr. Gabriel Weimann, a full professor at University of Haifa’s Department of Communication, has offered preemptive measures for combating a looming scourge across the Metaverse.

The Metaverse — which is being positioned by communication technology companies as the next internet — is a leap towards a universe of boundless, interconnected virtual communities where people can socialize, communicate, collaborate, enjoy remote concerts and performances, and buy and sell products using virtual reality devices.

While the Metaverse is still in the developmental stage, Prof. Weimann, who is also a professor at Reichman University, and his co-author Roy Dimant recommend steps for getting ahead of the curve when it comes to future cyberterrorism threats.

“The old battlefield has changed into one that is no longer just physical but also virtual, where non-state actors play a key role, given their influence and expertise. As both sides try to outmaneuver each other, a vicious cycle of innovations and countermeasures takes shape,” writes Prof. Weimann. “It is necessary to break this cycle with a new long-term strategy, with preemptive measures requiring the participation of all relevant partners. Several steps are needed to devise a concrete and interconnected strategy that will thwart terrorist organizations before they strike first.”

Among the proposed measures are public-private partnerships, monitoring, identification policy, and user education.