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Former spy-chief: extremism on social media could threaten the foundations of western democracy

David Omand, who ran GCHQ, argues that Twitter and Facebook embolden the far Right

By David Omand   July 2018

David Omand, former GCHQ chief. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

I still regard it as a higher form of magic that I can use a phone to share my views with 2.8bn other social media users. But Twitter and Facebook have a darker side. I have seen them amplify and encourage the growth of radical voices, most worryingly on the far right, where Alt-Right and other extremist tendencies have in recent years gained ground. These forces are becoming so powerful that they now threaten the very foundations of western democracy. 

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