Bill Gates says anonymity of cryptocurrencies not a good thingFebruary 28, 2018
Bill Gates is none too pleased with cryptocurrencies and during a Reddit “ask me anything” session, the second richest man in the world says that the anonymity feature of cryptocurrencies is not a good thing.
On the other hand Gates says that the Governments’ ability to find money laundering and tax evasion and terrorist funding is a good thing. He added the cryptocurrencies are being used to buy drugs and so it is a technology that is responsible for deaths directly.
“I think the speculative wave around ICOs and crypto currencies is super risky for those who go long”, he added.
The statements have been criticized a lot on social media. Some point to the anonymity statement made by Gates and rightly point out that trillions of dollars have already been laundered without being detected and this effectively makes fiat currency worse than bitcoin and other cryptos.
Terrorists are still making their money through oil sales in dollars and not through cryptos as it would complicate their lives and add a rather huge hurdle in getting their money back as they would eventually have to go through a bank to get their money.
Another statement made by Gates regarding drugs has also been criticized. Drugs have been bought and sold for years using fiat currency and so it effectively means that cryptos aren’t to be blamed for that menace either. Cryptos may be used for illicit purposes, but that’s only since bitcoin emerged. Before that and after that fiat currency based drugs trading and end-user consumption still mainly relies on fiat.
The statements made by Gates are not different from those made by other anti-crypto groups. This group comprises of bankers, financial institutions and government authorities who do not want to let go off control over financial transactions of people around the world.
Gates however does have a good point. In reply to someone saying “The US dollar is also used to buy fentanyl and god knows what else,” Gates says: “Yes – anonymous cash is used for these kinds of things but you have to be physically present to transfer it which makes things like kidnapping payments more difficult.”