Suspected child abuse images found within Bitcoin's blockchain...

The blockchain can store more than a record of Bitcoin transactions - it can also store files.

Back in 2015 interpol warned “the design of the blockchain means there is the possibility of malware being injected and permanently hosted with no methods currently available to wipe this data”.

Researchers at Germany's RWTH Aachen University studied the non-transaction related data within the blockchain and discovered 1,600 files, 274 categorized as 'sexual images' and 1 they suspect to be child pornography, as well as 2 more files that contained a list of links to child pornography sites on darknet.

Here's why it matters: could this technically make simply possessing the blockchain illegal?

Also important to remember - there's no way to delete these files, data on the blockchain is forever.

“Our analysis shows that certain content, eg, illegal pornography, can render the mere possession of a blockchain illegal. Although court rulings do not yet exist, legislative texts from countries such as Germany, the UK, or the USA suggest that illegal content such as can make the blockchain illegal to possess for all users.” the researchers say.

You can read their full findings here.

Author: Adam Lee
Asia News Desk