Criminal activity and Bitcoin have long been discussed as counterparts ever since the first satoshi was moved online. Thoughts on this are slowly changing now that cryptocurrency trading and usage have grown in recent years, but Bitcoin still struggles to remove itself from its infamous reputation as “dirty money.”
The initial appeal of a decentralized currency quickly became its own enemy as Bitcoin gained traction on the dark web as the preferred currency of the Silk Road (an online marketplace that offered drugs, weapons, and other criminal merchandise). The same privacy that made Bitcoin a “currency of the people,” rapidly caused it to be associated with anonymous criminal activity whenever discussed in the media. The Silk Road has been shut down for a long time, but the reputation of Bitcoin has still not recovered despite countless use-cases for legal transactions today.
Bitcoin is also consistently vilified for its role in money laundering. In reality, money laundering in cash is simply easier than using Bitcoin to hide money traces. Less than a year ago, Danske Bank discovered that over 200 billion Euro had been laundered through its Estonian branch in the span of less than a decade. No one was caught, and no one was held accountable. This is only a single case in the banking world and far from an isolated one. The largest case involving cryptocurrencies came from the aforementioned Silk Road bust, adding up to only $25 million.
Another common fear being discussed is that Bitcoin is easily susceptible to theft via hacking or scams. It is true that many users have fallen prey to the tricks of scammers or have allowed their private keys to be compromised by hackers. However, with enough research on how to store your coins properly and when and how to transfer currency, any coin holder should be able to minimize their risk to far lower than the current banking standards. To accomplish this, make sure to check the BXB blog posts regarding storage and safety tips.
The simple truth is this: Bitcoin has much fewer ties to criminal activity than “real” centralized currencies, yet it has much more positive attributes and application for the future. At BXB, we want our users to be well-educated on their investments, and show why we think the decentralized and anonymous nature of cryptocurreny makes it a positive and safe way to trade and invest.