Human traffickers, drug dealers and weapons smugglers are all concerned about new financial transaction reporting requirements that are likely to be included in the new Senate infrastructure bill. Critics of the new regulations are already deriding them as “job killing government regulations” and “an attack on private sector innovation and an attempt at imposing one-world government socialism”.
“Lawmakers want people facilitating trades in Bitcoin and other digital assets to be subject to reporting rules similar to those governing the sale of stocks and other securities: Brokers would be required to report things like how much people paid for cryptocurrencies. The proposal is alarming many in the industry, who are expressing fear of being ambushed with a host of new rules they could be stuck with for years,” reports Politico.
“They see the new reporting requirements as potentially damaging the economic viability of cryptocurrency markets, which have seen a rapid expansion in new users during the pandemic.”
“Industry groups including the Blockchain Association, Coin Center and the Association for Digital Asset Markets outlined their opposition to the requirements in statements on Thursday, taking particular note of provisions in the draft version that could lead to targeting of individual users. Perianne Boring, founder and president of the Chamber of Digital Commerce, said in an interview on Friday that her group proposed amending the bill language to “tighten the definition” of what constitutes brokering activity to exclude cryptocurrency miners and the operators of decentralized finance platforms.”
There is widespread fear within the Libertarian communities that greater monitoring of Bitcoin transactions could hamper the everyday transactions of typical Bitcoin users. “How am I supposed to explain to the government that bitcoin transaction that was worth the equivalent of almost $1 Million US Dollars was for a van-load of teenaged Syrian girls that I kidnapped from a refugee camp in Greece and then sold into sexual slavery,” is just one example of the kinds of concerns raised by the average Bitcoin user. There is also concern among Russian intelligence agencies that close monitoring of Bitcoin transactions may make it far more difficult to interfere in other countries political elections, and international drug traffickers are worried about their ability to launder profits from the sale of Fentanyl and other opiates.