An article in Coin Telegraph from Gareth Jenkinson highlights the issues being used by government to justify having the power to monitor our cryptocurrency use.
Using terrorism to force regulation
Terrorism has been a threat to civilised society for decades and governments have done their utmost to snuff out the most significant threats.
There is no doubt that terrorist groups pose a danger to society, but the truth is that the threat of terrorism has also been used as an excuse to spy on the general populace and invade foreign countries.
Following the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Centre in New York in 2001, America rescinded into Marshall Law and ultimately invaded Afghanistan to confront the Taliban head on.
Since then the US has grown into a massive security state – and it was only a matter of time until the likes of the National Security Agency were caught spying on the American people.
This example is one of the most recent and well known instances of a government actively spying on their own citizens, using the threat of terrorism to infringe on the privacy and rights of their people.
Tax evasion and fraud
This is probably the biggest concern for governments and their respective revenue services. Massive efforts are being made to follow up on cryptocurrency users that have failed to declare their earnings.
American exchange Coinbase was ordered to hand over the details of their biggest users trading details as the US tax man looks to clamp down on tax evasion.
This week, Australia ordered that all exchanges operating in the country to register with its anti-money laundering agency.
These are understandable concerns but a line needs to be drawn in the sand. Earnings made on investments are taxable and people need to understand that.
But making wild and unsubstantiated claims about the nefarious uses of cryptocurrencies as a reason to spy on and demand user information is wrong.
People should use cryptocurrencies responsibly, but we also need to be wary of authorities misusing power to force new and unfounded regulations on the most important technological development of the 21st century.
Read More at Coin Telegraph
As a closing note, let me add to this that anything anyone can do to limit their tax liability is a good thing from my perspective.
Also, if you want to understand more of the threat to government through anonymity, read this article I wrote a while back on this subject.