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Issue #434: Give the bare minimum

Issue #434: Give the bare minimum

Mar 6, 2019
Marty's Ƀent

Issue #434: Give the bare minimum

Piggybacking on yesterday's issue I thought it'd be a good idea to share this exchange between our friends Pierre Rochard and Francis Pouliot discussing what information is required to be collected by Bitcoin exchanges. As Pierre points out, it's not clear if exchanges must do all the on-chain analytics that some chain analysis company salesmen are pushing on their prey. This is a very important topic because lives are at risk.

As Bitcoin continues to succeed massively, become more popular, and appreciate in price, the safety of Bitcoin holders should be of the utmost importance for exchanges. By collecting as much identifying information as possible on their users, exchanges are putting the people who make them profitable at risk in the long-term. We are all abreast of the fact that centralized 3rd parties have historically been pretty ineffective when it comes to thwarting customer data leaks. We would be naive to think that Bitcoin exchanges are immune to these types of leaks. Taking this into consideration, it should be demanded by the market that these exchanges collect as little data as necessary. Bitcoiners should not have to dox their home addresses to access sound digital money. Bitcoin is free speech and it is a human right, we should not have to jump through so many regulatory hoops to acquire it. Especially when those hoops put lives in danger.

We saw it in the Netherlands a couple of weeks ago, nefarious actors identified a Bitcoin trader, found his home address, and tortured him in front of his daughter until he coughed up some UTXOs. A truly chilling event that should make Bitcoiners seriously consider their OPSEC practices. This should also be a glaring example of why personal information collection from exchanges should be frowned upon and avoided at all costs. The risks that come with the custody of a digital bearer asset are considerably more pronounced than the risks that come with holding fiat in a bank account. It's easier to target rich Bitcoiners than rich nocoiners, exchanges should operate from this first principle, show some fucking balls, and stand up for the customers that keep their lights on.

Final thought...

I still have the child-like daydream of being able to fly. Especially while sitting in traffic on the Jersey side of the Holland Tunnel knowing it will take me an hour to move 4 miles.


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