Following this introductory chapter, the discussion begins in chapter two by examining the human rights concerns arising from the discussion on the usefulness of terrorist profiling in chapters three to five. The human rights concerns are examined first as a preliminary issue to determine the likely circumstances (if any) that profiling may be considered compatible with fundamental rights. In this chapter, it is argued that there are two precursory issues in any assessment on the usefulness of terrorist profiling that may have an impact on the conclusion drawn on usefulness in chapters four to six. Firstly, whether it can ever be justified to include sensitive characteristics in terrorist profiling and secondly, if so, in what circumstances can sensitive characteristics be justified in the construction and application of terrorist profiles. The argument advanced in this chapter is that there is no single answer to either of these questions from the perspective of law enforcement officers but rather there are at least two sets of arguments that need to be taken into account in assessing the justification of including sensitive characteristics in the profiling process.
Firstly, there are positive arguments which involve focusing on the lawfulness of including sensitive characteristics in the terrorist profiling process. Secondly, there are normative arguments which involve assessing whether the inclusion of sensitive characteristics is something that the state ought to avoid in light of the risk that particular individuals or groups of individuals may become the focal point of enhanced law enforcement scrutiny. The discussion in chapter two concentrates on identifying, explaining and evaluating the positive arguments concerning the justification question. The normative arguments are considered individually in chapters four to six when the discussion turns to assessing the impact of terrorist profiling.
In resolving the positive or lawfulness issue of including sensitive characteristics, the discussion in chapter two contends that there appears to be a basis to argue that formal manifestations of terrorist profiling may be considered justified and hence lawful for at least two reasons. Firstly, the systematic nature of manifestations of formal terrorist profiling means that it is possible to review, alter and adapt profiling so that the risk of relying solely on sensitive characteristics is minimised. Secondly, the sensitive characteristics are included with non-sensitive characteristics to reduce or manage the risk of sensitive characteristics becoming the main or sole criteria to identify individuals for enhanced levels of review by law enforcement officers.
The discussion in chapter two also argues that manifestations of informal terrorist profiling can never be justified on the grounds that these profiling processes are not subject to review and lack transparency in assessing their usefulness. Additionally, manifestations of informal terrorist profiling carry a risk that particular individuals exhibiting the sensitive characteristics become the concentration for law enforcement officers in the detection, prevention and prosecution of acts of terrorism and preparatory activities.
After assessing the positive/lawfulness issue in favour of including sensitive characteristics, the key issue in this book is then to consider the normative argument related to classifying and evaluating manifestations of formal and informal terrorist profiling. However, in order to begin conducting a normative assessment of terrorist profiling, it is necessary to create an analytical lens to evaluate the likely usefulness of terrorist profiling being able to fulfil its core objective of being assistive to law enforcement officers in the detection, prevention and prosecution of acts of terrorism and preparatory activities.
In starting to resolve this issue, the discussion in chapter three progresses by conducting an examination of different profiling methods and approaches that can be adopted in criminal profiling. This chapter examines criminal profiling as a basis to critique the likely usefulness of manifestations of terrorist profiling examined in subsequent chapters. This discussion identifies that there are two types of profiling: deductive and inductive profiling.
Deductive profiling is where law enforcement officers use profiling methods to react to crimes already committed and deduce offender characteristics by using forensic crime evidence and victim reports. The use of deductive profiling to identify likely offender characteristics is supported by offenders exhibiting particular pathologies in their commission of crime. For example, pathological crimes such as murder, rape and arson tend to be committed in a particular way, where the defendant may leave clues about their likely characteristics that may assist the profiler to construct an accurate profile. The discussion in chapter three suggests that this type of profiling is not suitable in the context terrorism given that terrorists are unlikely to exhibit the pathologies necessary to allow the profiler to accurately predict likely offender characteristics. Further, this type of profiling is about trying to apprehend an offender still at large but in some instances of contemporary terrorism, the use of suicide bombers results in the death of the actual bomber. As a result, a deductive profiling method or approach may not be considered capable of assisting law enforcement officer predict likely terrorist characteristics.
Alternatively, inductive profiling is where the law enforcement officer relies on proactive profiling methods as a tool to predict likely offender characteristics to prevent future criminality. The discussion in chapter three argues that this type of profiling may be considered as being more suitable in the context of terrorism so long as the profiler takes into account at least four issues. This includes the changing nature of information on terrorists, the availability of terrorism infor-mation/data, the accuracy of available data and not all suspects exhibiting the characteristics will necessarily be terrorists.
In light of the deductive/inductive analytical lens, the discussions in chapters four to six examine various manifestations of terrorist profiling so as to consider their potential usefulness to assist law enforcement officers detect, deter and prosecute those likely to be engaged in terrorism and/or preparatory activities. Each of these different manifestations of profiling is assessed in terms of its ‘effectiveness.’ The approach adopted to measure and evaluate ‘effectiveness’ is explained in section 1.7 of this chapter below.
Chapter four examines manifestations of formal terrorist profiling by focusing on various approaches adopted in Germany and the United States (US). This chapter separately examines the construction and application of profiles that draw upon knowledge discovery processes and data mining approaches. Knowledge discovery processes is where a profiler engages in a systematic extraction of information from various data sources so as to construct a profile of likely offender characteristics. Data mining is one step within a knowledge discovery process that assists the profiler make sense of the data that they have extracted.
A key theme evident in this discussion is that manifestations of formal terrorist profiling, as considered in this chapter, tend to adopt a highly systematic and formalised process to construct and apply profiles that follow an inductive profiling method/approach. Specifically, the construction of profiles is premised upon a broad range of data and their application in the field is subject to continuous testing so that the accuracy of these profiles can be reviewed and as a result they may have the potential to improve through iterative development.
It is acknowledged that the discussion cannot prove in absolute terms that the examined manifestations of formal terrorist profiling may capable of assisting law enforcement officers identify those likely to be engaged in acts of terrorism in practice. Nevertheless, from a theoretical perspective the approaches adopted in these manifestations of terrorist profiling provide a basis to control the data used in the construction of profiles and to further monitor the use of profiles in the field. As a result, it may be argued that there is a reasonable degree of probability that these manifestations of formal terrorist profiling may have the potential to assist law enforcement officers in preventing, detecting and deterring acts of terrorism over time. However, the discussion in this chapter questions whether the usefulness of this type of terrorist profiling is overshadowed by its impact on society as a whole. Nevertheless, it is argued that although manifestations of formal terrorist profiling are problematic, they are more capable of being controlled given their open and transparent nature.
Chapter five examines behavioural terrorist profiling as a further manifestation of terrorist profiling. This chapter argues that behavioural terrorist profiling cannot accurately be classified as being an example of formal terrorist profiling in comparable terms with those manifestations of formal terrorist profiling examined in chapter four. This is due to the fact that the manifestation of behavioural terrorist profiling examined in this chapter did not appear to exhibit the same level of a systematic process in the construction/application of profiles. However, the manifestation of behavioural terrorist profiling considered in this chapter tends to exhibit more of a formalised process that partially relied on inductive profiling methods/approaches in contrast to manifestations of informal terrorist profiling examined in chapter six. Consequently, the discussion in chapter five argues that the manifestation of behavioural terrorist profiling examined is on the profiling spectrum and can be positioned between formal and informal terrorist profiling.
Chapter six examines manifestations of profiling which may be classifiable as being closer towards manifestations of informal terrorist profiling on the profiling spectrum. In order to examine manifestations of informal terrorist profiling, the discussion in this chapter assesses the exercise of police powers so as to demonstrate to quite a high degree of probability that some uses of police powers may be classifiable as an example of informal terrorist profiling. These police powers include police-initiated stop and searches, the use of powers of arrest and the power to engage in identity checking and the raiding of premises. This classification rests on two core arguments. Firstly, the exercise of these powers is not officially recognised as being a form of profiling. Secondly, they do not appear to exhibit a comparable systematic process, approach or structure in the construction and application of profiles as those manifestations of formal terrorist profiling examined in chapter three. The selection of countries in this chapter may appear ad hoc from a methodological perspective but the evidence presented in this chapter is entirely based on available evidence.
The assessment of stop and search powers begins by examining the structure of this power established in various statutes so as to discern the types of data and the treatment of this data that can be drawn upon in the construction of profiles. The discussion of the application of the various stop and search powers in practice argues that there is a strong likelihood, that these powers may be considered as showing the hallmarks of a profiling process that is far short of the processes evidence in manifestations of formal profiling examined in chapter four.
The discussion also considers qualitative studies on peoples’ experiences of other uses of police powers including the use of targeted identity checking, the use of arrest powers and the targeted raiding of premises in France and Germany. This discussion argues that these studies further support the contention that some uses of police powers may be considered as resembling a hallmark of informal profiling. Although, these qualitative studies may expose potential abuses of police powers, they combine to show a strong possibility that law enforcement officers in some instances may be using these powers in an almost crude way to profile those suspected of being involved in terrorism.
The discussion in chapter six ultimately concludes that the use of these manifestations of informal terrorist profiling poses three grave concerns that questions the usefulness of this form of profiling. This includes the lack of an acknowledgment that these powers may in some instances be considered as being a form of profiling, which seriously impacts the reviewability of profiling. Additionally, the apparent absence of a process to construct profiles possess significant risks to the accuracy of the profile by being able to minimise the limitations of deductive and inductive profiling methods that is discussed in chapter three. Finally, the apparent application of these police powers on specific ethnicities raises serious concerns related to the lawfulness of each application of these powers. As a result, the discussion in this chapter concludes these manifestations of informal terrorist profiling are unlikely to assist any law enforcement officer prevent, detect or deter acts of terrorism by assisting in the identification of likely terrorist characteristics.