In Internet messages posted late last month, an individual dubbed ‘Abu Ahmed al Raqqa’ made an appeal to supporters of the Islamic State, asking them to send funds to the militant group so it could continue its plan to expand its “caliphate.”
These appeals were made on the dark web, a collection of web sites that use anonymity software such as Tor to hide identities, according to the Site Intelligence Group.
But the message, posted in Arabic and English, did not ask for cash donations or bank transfers. It asked for Bitcoins, the peer-to-peer cryptocurrency known for its high degree of anonymity.
For anyone following the Islamic State, such a message may cause some concern. The Islamic State has demonstrated significant skill in both fundraising (by selling ancient artifacts, for example) and technology (most notoriously, its use of online propaganda).
Given what appears to be a disturbing level of support for the group all around the world, Bitcoin may seem an easy way for the group to combine these skills and