There lurks a very disturbing surprise in the ever-growing blockchain of Bitcoin! A team of researchers stumbled upon some links to online child pornography that had been recorded into the technology. Honestly, we don’t know what to say at this point!
Some More Horrifying Details
The researchers from Aachen University in Germany have claimed to have uncovered around 274 links while they were investigating the non-financial data that had been stashed into the Bitcoins blockchain over a period of time.
Unfortunately, there is even more! A pornographic image, which is possibly of a minor was scribbled into the blockchain. Its super disturbing, we know! If we look at it theoretically. The blockchain could be illegal to posses in 112 countries just because of this!
How Did the Sexual Content Get There?
Although, the main purpose of the blockchain of Bitcoin is to records all the crypto transactions. It’s also possible to add snippets of non-financial data too. It has its benefits, for example a notary service can easily connect the Bitcoin transaction to a digital document.
The blockchain is decentralized and makes the data recorded immutable. But, there is a problem! Anyone from anywhere can anonymously insert extremely controversial and inappropriate data on the blockchain. Just like how it happened in this case!
What Did the German Researchers Really Find?
The researchers decided to download the Bitcoin blockchain and scanned for objectionable content. Among all the transaction data, they found child pornographic content in three files with 274 links that directed them to sites that are found on the Dark Web. Interestingly, other content was discovered as well. Emails, forums discussing money launder and backups of WikiLeaks data.
We Had Been Warned
The thing is, we all had been warned that something like this could happen. Interpol had already been worried about the bad actors that could embed malware and even other illegal data including child abuse images into the technology. So, we saw it coming! But, the truth is we didn’t accept it! Maybe, we just turned a blind eye towards it. Now it has happened and we wonder what else is lurking on various blockchains out there.
Bitcoins Security and the Diminishing Trust in the Crypto
The US law clearly states that its a crime to possess child pornographic content when the offender intentionally and knowingly retains or transfers it.
It’s not easy to stumble upon such content by an average Bitcoin user though. To the human eye the illegal content will appear in the form of alphabet characters and scrambled number. But, if the data is decoded then it can viewed in its original form. The pornographic can’t be removed from the blockchain. But, the researchers are looking into a solution.
We’re afraid that something like this might happen again! It’s been horrifying to know all of this. What was your reaction when you came across this story? Do you think there could be a possible solution that could put all the illegal activities at halt? Share your thoughts with us!