The Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (Isis) militant group has reportedly created an encrypted Android messaging app to enable secure communications between its members. Dubbed Alrawi, the app aims to make it harder for security agencies and governments to intercept the communications of Isis members.
The app, first discovered by counterterrorism network Ghost Security Group, is not available to download from the Google Play store. Instead, it requires an Isis supporter to download the app's apk code and sideload it on their Android device. Last year, Ghost Security Group uncovered Amaq Agency, another app by Isis that was used to send its members news and recruitment information.
"The application's primary purpose is for propaganda distribution. Using the app you are able to follow the most recent news and video clips." Ghost Security representatives told tech blog Defense One. The group has been found of releasing a booklet that provides a list of things that their supporters are supposed to do or not do. The booklet apparently also includes a list of tools that can help them securely converse with other followers.
Isis uses a range of media to spread its propaganda to its followers, which has made it harder for the FBI and other government-run organisations from tracking them. Thousands of Isis-related accounts were found and were taken down on Facebook and Twitter last year. Following the crackdown last year, the group made public groups on Telegram. The popular messaging service later removed Isis-related channels amid terrorist attacks in Paris.
The hacktivist group Anonymous is also after Isis, having declared "war" against them last year. The group also started a campaign last year to troll jihadists online.