News RAND Study: Cryptocurrencies Not Currently Viable for Terrorist Funding

RAND Study: Cryptocurrencies Not Currently Viable for Terrorist Funding


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A new report by RAND, the multi-subject think tank, has found that cryptocurrencies are not currently viable for terrorist usage.

The report analyzed whether cryptocurrencies are currently being used by terrorist organizations, as well as what future attributes would make them a more viable solution for terrorist organizations. The report focused on five attributes of cryptocurrency that is also important to terrorist groups; anonymity, usability, security, acceptance, reliability, and volume.

The report found that no single cryptocurrency satisfied all the attributes well enough to meet these groups’ criteria. For example, Bitcoin was more usable than other coins, but lack strong anonymity, whereas Zcash satisfied anonymity requirements, but lacked usability and acceptance attributes. However, Hamas, the Gaza Strip-based Palestinian terror group, has already been accepting Bitcoin donations for the past two months.

“We see little current evidence of the adoption of cryptocurrencies by terrorist organizations or the motivation to do so, but that very well might change as countermeasures shut off funding and as the cryptocurrency technology changes.”

Keeping cryptocurrency peaceful

While cryptocurrency is meant to be decentralized and thus what it is used for cannot be controlled, the general concept of competition, competing money in this case, is to satisfy consumer desires by voluntary means rather than coercion. This report comes at a time when many governments want to take punitive measures against cryptocurrency and their users under the guise of “protection” from harmful actors, such as terrorists using cryptocurrency. Luckily, this report’s research shows that those concerns are simply overblown. It should also be stated that cash and disposable cell phones are preferred by criminals and terrorists, but there are not widespread calls to ban these items.

Nevertheless, the report does illustrate that cryptocurrency could be used for terrorist activities if enough features were improved and calibrated to meet the exact demands of terrorist groups. The report added that if “a single cryptocurrency emerges that provides widespread adoption, better anonymity, improved security, and that is subject to lax or inconsistent regulation, then the potential utility of this cryptocurrency, as well as the potential for its use by terrorist organizations, would increase”.

Dash dedicated to legitimate use adoption

Dash might, at first, be considered to be stuck in a difficult position since it has been one the top cryptocurrencies when it comes to innovating in terms of usability, acceptance, and security, which simultaneously increases the appeal among good and bad actors. However, Dash attempts to achieve peaceful adoption by focusing on merchant adoption, exchange integrations, and other legitimate business solutions that make Dash more appealing for legal usage. Additionally, while Dash does offer PrivateSend mixing, it still stores all obscured data on the blockchain, which is not in the interest of criminals or terrorist groups.

Since Dash is already being used around the world at nearly 5,000 merchants, it is already on the road to wider and more diverse adoption, which is much more than other coins that focus on only one or two attributes and thus see user segments that match those categories. As Dash continues to focus on being everyday digital cash, it will continue seeing users that are well-rounded looking for an independent source of monetary and financial freedom.

This post was originally published on DashNews. Bitnewsbot curates, examines, and summarizes news from external services while producing its own original material. Copyrights from external sources will be credited as they pertain to their corresponding owners.


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