Terrorists Abuse NFTs For Recruiting and Funding

Quick Summary

  • Terrorists might be planning to turn to NFTs to spread their message, recruit, and fund their organizations. The experts seem concerned after the first case of NFTs by a terror synthesizer group popped up.

Related: 7 Most Common Methods Used by Hackers to Loot NFTs and DeFi

Non-Fungible tokens or NFTs defined new ways to save and incentivize digital files, media, and artwork. NFTs have become a building block of the metaverse, play-2-earn blockchain games, and Web 3. Tokenizing real-world assets, event tickets, exclusive community passes, PFPs, and much more – NFTs have so much to offer. This was all good until the experts first found out NFTs were being used in money laundering and now in terror funding, spreading messages, and recruiting new warriors by the terrorist group.

NFT named IS-NEWS #01

As revealed by Wall Street Journal (WSJ), the NFT was posted by a pro-ISIS social media account which was first discovered by Raphael Gluck, co-founder of the United States-based research firm Jihadoscop. The article in the Wall Street Journal on Sunday showed concerns about NFTs being used by terrorist groups to avoid the sanctions covertly using blockchain-based assets. 

The NFT being discussed is named IS-NEWS #01 which apparently praises Afghan-based militants for attacking a Taliban position. This NFT also includes an emblem of IS (Islamic State) on it. The said account minted two more NFTs on August 26. In one NFT called “Chemist”, a teacher is seen teaching students to make explosives, and the second NFT “Cigarettes Or Miswak” condemns smoking.

A screenshot of NFTs posted by a hostile account: Source

This is enough for the agencies to raise eyebrows over the issue. Once an NFT is minted it is not easy to take it down unless the creator or owner does so. The above-mentioned NFTs are „Not for Sale“ which means those NFTs are displayed there for the purpose of propaganda and spreading messages. But if some NFTs are minted for the purpose of selling, it will be direct terror financing.

“It’s very much an experiment […] to find ways to make content indestructible,” said Gluck. As the name of the NFT “IS-NEWS #01” suggests that apparently, those terror groups are experimenting with the idea and if this succeeds, they might bombard the NFT marketplaces with a series of NFTs.


Theoretically, it is not possible to keep someone from posting or minting an NFT even on a centralized marketplace. NFT marketplaces are accessed through Web 3 wallets, which can be created within minutes and, that too, anonymously. It’s unclear how the watchdogs are going to tackle this but one thing they can do is to bar those social media accounts from marketing these NFTs.

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author: mnmansha

Disclaimer: This article is provided for informational purposes only. It is not offered or intended to be used as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice.