The U.K. will introduce a prison sentence to those who constantly check online terrorism material under a soon-to-be-updated counterterrorism law, British Home Secretary Amber Rudd announced Tuesday.
It follows a spate of acid attacks in London in recent months. Jonathan Evans, who ran Britain's MI5 spy service from 2007 until 2013, said that while encryption did make attacks harder to stop, it also helped to prevent criminals and even foreign governments from hacking private data.
In a wide-ranging speech, Rudd also announced new restrictions on chemicals that will "drastically limit" the sale of sulfuric acid.
Emergency response following acid attack at the junction of Hackney Road junction with Queensbridge Road, London July 13, 2017, in this photo obtained from social media.
In a bid to prevent the dramatic rise in acid attacks across the country, the United Kingdom government is planning to ban the sale of acid to minors.
"I want to make sure those who view despicable terrorist content online, including jihadi websites, far-right propaganda and bomb-making instructions, face the full force of the law", Rudd said in a Conservative Party Conference.
Rudd said that she meant to also drastically limit the public sale of sulphuric acid as it could be used as a compound in homemade explosives, such as the one used in the Manchester bombing in May, which left 22 people dead.
The move comes as the Home Secretary stepped up her calls for internet giants such as Facebook and Google to do more to tackle extremism on the internet.
New laws will close the loophole which now allows under-18s to buy knives online and the possession of deadly weapons such as flick knives and zombie knives will be outlawed.
Among a raft of measures, Mrs Rudd announced a major investment in technology which will track down indecent images of children online and remove them at an unprecedented rate.
"Child exploitation has absolutely no place on our service - which is why we work with law enforcement to identify these accounts and block them", the WhatsApp spokeswoman said. Our question to them will be "if not, why not".
She also told party activists that security services had foiled seven "new consultation on offensive weapons, which will be published in the autumn". "And I will demand very clear answers", she threatened.