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ISIS Launches A New App To Promote Child Learning, With A Jihadist Angle

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A new application from the Islamic State's "Liberty of Zeal" was made public on May 11, designed to teach children information like the alphabet with a jihadist twist. 

The app, which was released through Islamic State Telegram channels and a variety of file sharing websites, appears to help children write Arabic letters, learn the alphabet and kids' songs. However, many of the words taught through the app have a jihadist angle, such as "tank," "gun" and "rocket."

Children can also browse through images of these words. Photos of the app show cartoon depictions of guns and tanks. Cannons, bullets and swords are also featured in the app, which is downloadable on Android devices. 

This is not the first app launched by the Islamic State, though it's the first to be aimed at children. In December 2015, the terrorist group made headlines for launching an app designed to spread propaganda. It was initially discovered by Ghost Security Group, an organization that specifically works to disrupt the group's operations on the Internet. The app showed videos of beheadings and messages about terrorist attacks around the world. 

Telegram, the encrypted messaging app, has been used by the Islamic State in the past to communicate its messages across the Web. However, the service has been working hard to sever the group's ties via Telegram. In November 2015, Telegram announced that it had blocked 78 ISIS-related channels across 12 languages. 

Despite efforts to slow the progress of terrorist groups on the Internet, they continue to work around shutdown attempts. In April, the Taliban developed an Android app to connect with a wide audience. Titled Alemarah, the app provided access to Taliban videos that spread the group's message. The SITE Intel Group discovered its launch and prompted its removal from the Google Play Store shortly after its debut.

In addition to developing apps, terrorist groups such as ISIS have been utilizing social media to encourage more uprising for their cause. Many American ISIS supporters are active on platforms including Google Plus, Facebook and Tumblr. They also commonly use avatars to act as "badges" of their pride for the Islamic State.

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