Islamic State Uses NFTs To Spread Pro-IS Propaganda
Recently, NFT marketplaces displayed IS-NEWS #01, an NFT declaring praise for the Islamic State for an attack that killed 21 people in Afghanistan. This has raised fresh concerns that terrorist organizations may be looking to exploit financial technologies such as NFTs to aid their financing.
The NFT space is beginning to become a lucrative one, and everyone is looking to get into NFTs. Unfortunately, this includes terrorists. Earlier, experts stated that the immutable nature of the blockchain on which NFTs are stored and traded provides a chance for terrorists to create indestructible content, promote their propaganda and sponsor their sinister crimes.
Islamic State NFT discovered by Jihadoscope
The said NFT was first discovered by Jihadoscope, announcing its discovery on social media late last month.
The creator of this NFT, who appears to be an Islamic State sympathizer, displayed it alongside two other NFTs. The second NFT showed an individual with a gas mask and lab suit, surrounded by assault rifles and beakers. In third place was an NFT that condemned the smoking of cigarettes.
Steps taken to delist the dangerous NFT
Rarible and other NFT marketplaces have delisted the IS-NEWS #01 NFT and two other NFTs from the creator . However, a former federal intelligence analyst, Mario Cosby, told the Wall Street Journal, “There’s not really anything anyone can do to actually take this NFT down,”. It is still possible for anyone with access to the address of the NFT to view it. This is due to the immutable nature of the blockchain.
Raising funds through NFT sales
Many political groups have used cryptocurrencies and NFTs to aid funding for different causes. In February this year, reports were that Al-Qaeda, ISIS, and Hamas had been using crypto wallets for terror-related activities. However, NFTs also raise funds for good, such as when NFTs were used to generate funds to donate to Ukraine following the Russian invasion.