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How should crypto balance the right to anonymity and criminal activity?

So i’ve recently read this post from reuters: [https://www.reuters.com/breakingviews/bitcoin-passes-ransom-test-2021-05-14/](https://www.reuters.com/breakingviews/bitcoin-passes-ransom-test-2021-05-14/)

And it got me thinking, how do we balance decentralisation, the right to anonymity and major criminal activity?

Up until now most cryptocurrencies are traded on exchanges which makes trading crypto in general more centralized than actually decentralized.

In many past cases this also prevents cashing out ransomed funds through official exchanges simply by blacklisting blockchain/DAG addresses.

This comes with a problem though, tokes get flat out unusable limiting the actual overall supply.

Is there any project that actually addressed this and has/is working on a solution for this scenario?

How would a solution look with a completely decentralized approach that doesn’t use exchanges?

I thought that maybe burning and reintroducing wallet funds into a project through a consensus vote would be a possible idea but how can a system like that prevent abuse?

Kinda curious if this is even achievable



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11 Comments

  1. Everything is on a public blockchain, how do u think they find out about people buying drugs with their bitcoin. It’s very hard to money laundering with bitcoin. If you really want to money laundering just use the US dollar. You can’t see who gave it to who, you don’t know where the money is going. The argument that bitcoin is used by criminals is basically nonexistent.

  2. Good points. In the fiat world, you can levy fines and seize the proceeds of crime, both of which can be distributed. If someone refuses to give up their private key, or the police seize hardware wallets, how do we use that crypto for good?

  3. The same way we balance this currently with paper currency. Anonymity and privacy. My dollar is the same as your dollar; doesn’t matter where it came from.

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