“A lie will travel around the whole world while the truth is still getting its boots on.”
An article posted September 2015 claimed that a group of "hackers" called "GhostSec" had discovered a Bitcoin wallet containing $20M worth of Bitcoin tied to ISIS/Islamic State.
I was intrigued, because if it were true it would be verifiable. Bitcoin's design allows someone who has discovered a Bitcoin wallet to post the address of that wallet publicly so that everyone else can verify its contents and history. So I asked the journalist who wrote the article, and the GhostSec people named in the article, for corroborating evidence.
The GhostSec people did not reply to me, but the journalist replied to say that it was a mistake — he had never meant to assert that there was a Bitcoin wallet tied to ISIS/Islamic State and someone else had added that detail to his story:
My conclusion: “Remember that $20M of Bitcoin linked to Islamic State? Yep, it was bullshit.”
Now, in the aftermath of the horrific Paris attacks, the bullshit has gained wings:
The news article he's pointing to? Yep, that's the same bullshit story from last September that has been recanted by its author.
Bottom-line: the latest claims of ISIS/Islamic State using Bitcoin come without evidence, even though Bitcoin's architecture makes it uniquely easy to provide evidence. The people making the claims are known bullshitters. This doesn't prove that ISIS/Islamic State isn't using Bitcoin, but there's no particular reason to believe that they are.