European Union Pushes for Mass Surveillance of Bitcoin and Crypto Transactions

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Ernest Urtasun, a member of the E.U. Parliament, took to Twitter on Wednesday to provide a glimpse of upcoming regulations looking to “put an end to the wild west of unregulated crypto.”

The legislation introduces a large number of requirements for both registered entities as well as “unhosted wallets” (Bitcoin and cryptocurrency wallets that are unassociated with a regulated entity). Bitcoin and crypto asset service providers (CASPs) will be required to collect information on all transfers involving unhosted wallets, and must apply “enhanced due diligence measures.”

Additionally, the regulations require verification of the identity of beneficial owners of wallets looking to transfer amounts larger than 1,000 euros.

The Twitter post goes on to provide other information on increasingly strict mandates that aim to remove anonymity from Bitcoin and cryptocurrency wallets and their interactions with CASPs.

The release of these details has sparked a wide range of responses as the highly contentious legislation seems to impede on the privacy of all digital asset users. 

Alex Gladstein replied to the Twitter post stating:

Imagine having this much zeal about expanding a surveillance regime on the people you are supposed to be representing in a democracy.

Others have also taken to Twitter to showcase their thoughts on the restrictive measures and increased surveillance these regulations introduce.

The use of generic terms such as “enhanced due diligence” leaves ambiguity that could potentially provide the government with more control over digital assets and hosted wallets. 

It is unclear when these regulations may take effect as the bill is currently waiting for final approval. However, this first look has many questioning the governmental reach of the E.U. and how it may affect the future of Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies in the near and far future.

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CJ is a copywriter by trade, specializing in technology and the decentralized world. He’s a staunch supporter of financial freedom, self improvement, and living to one’s highest potential. He currently runs Techtonic Copywriting while also acting as a marketing advisor for several startups and companies.


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