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Communications of the ACM

ACM Opinion

Infrastructure Bill's Cryptocurrency Surveillance Provision Is Privacy Disaster


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Infrastructure Bill's Cryptocurrency Surveillance Provision Is Privacy Disaster

Make no mistake: There is a clear and substantial harm in ratcheting up financial surveillance and forcing more actors within the blockchain ecosystem to gather data on users.

The forthcoming Senate draft of President Biden's infrastructure bill contains a provision that could create new surveillance requirements for many within the blockchain ecosystem, including developers and others who do not control digital assets on behalf of users.

Why? The provision is referenced as a potential way to improve tax compliance; it is believed that more rigorous surveillance of the cryptocurrency community will boost tax revenue flow from this community without actually increasing taxes. Basically, it's presuming that huge swaths of cryptocurrency users are engaged in mass tax avoidance, without providing any evidence of that.

From Electronic Frontier Foundation
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