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Radicalisation is the process through which people come to support increasingly extreme political, religious or other ideals. This can lead them to support violent extremism and terrorism.

Radicalisation can happen in various ways and can happen to anyone:

·       An individual can become radicalised in person by another person or in a group who actively seek to persuade others to adopt their views.

·       Individuals can also ‘self-radicalise’ without direct influence from another person, by reading or viewing extremist literature or material, often via the online space.

·       Radicalisation through the internet in the online space is a particular concern and can happen through social media forums and even through online gaming sites.

People might be susceptible to Radicalisation due to a variety of circumstances, needs or other underlying factors. Factors which may influence someone to be more susceptible to Radicalisation could include:

·       feeling isolated, disconnected or marginalised from family, friends or the community
·       lacking a sense of belonging, meaning or purpose
·       having a sense of grievance

Belief in an extremist cause and membership of an extremist group can offer people a sense of purpose, identity and community. This may be particularly appealing to someone who is experiencing difficulties and challenges in their life.

Signs that someone is being radicalised may include (but are not limited to):

·       isolation or withdrawal from family and friends
·       obsession with and secrecy around the internet and social networking sites
·       becoming uncooperative and disengaged
·       using abusive, aggressive or extremist views/comments/threats/language
·       a fascination with weapons, chemicals, explosives or extremist activity and events, including a
fascination with historical or unusual subjects that may have extremist links
·       significant changes in relationships
·       the use of seemingly scripted speech
·       change in behaviour or appearance due to new influences
·       seeking to recruit or ‘groom’ others to an extremist ideology
·       possession of violent extremist literature

There is more information available on the ACT EARLY website about possible signs of Radicalisation with a support line for advice:

What are the signs of radicalisation? | ACT Early

If you are worried that someone is being radicalised, you can visit the local PREVENT Police website which has useful information about Radicalisation concerns and about how to make a referral:

Prevent | Devon & Cornwall Police (

If you are concerned that someone is being radicalised in your workplace, and there is no immediate danger, please talk to your Prevent lead.


The Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015 contains a duty on specified authorities to have due regard to the need to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism. This is also known as the Prevent duty.

PREVENT draws together a wide range of sectors (including Local Authorities, Education, Health, Police, Probation and Communities) to reduce risks and support individuals who may be susceptible to Radicalisation.

ACT Early | Prevent radicalisation


Getting help

Preventing Exploitation Toolkit

If there is the potential for you to encounter people who are vulnerable to exploitation through your job, whether it's paid or voluntary work, please refer to this toolkit.

ACT Early

Prevent radicalisation and extremism by acting early and reporting your concerns in confidence.

Devon and Cornwall Police

As part of the Prevent strategy, Devon and Cornwall Police offer information and advice about to prevent extremist views in your community. Any concerns about radicalisation in your community should be reported to the police on 999.