Bitcoin has made the news in a big way….I even did a post recently trying to help my readers understand just what Bitcoin is and how it works……
The Bitcoin craze gets crazier….
It had to happen sooner or later.
Digital cryptocurrencies have been on a rocket ride in 2017. The most famous, bitcoin, rose from under $1,000 at the start of the year to $5,000 in October. Then it blasted off to nearly $20,000 per bitcoin by mid-December. Other cryptocurrencies were carried along by the craze.
The thing is, it’s always been hard to identify a “there” there. Digital cryptocurrencies like bitcoin aren’t very good mediums of exchange or stores of value. Nothing seems to be fueling the price rise other than, well, excitement over the price rise.
Bitcoin is making in roads in the shadowy world of terrorism……it is a grand way to launder money but can it be used to finance terrorist networks?
Signs are increasing that jihadist groups are looking to capitalize on the rising value of bitcoin, as massive price increases for the cryptocurrency in recent months garner growing public attention. Cold, hard, untraceable cash remains their preferred medium for transmitting funds, but new online activity shows that some jihadist groups are soliciting bitcoins, which can be acquired and spent without any government or banking intermediary.
Terrorist networks cannot easily transact in the formal banking system, so they often employ innovative methods to gain resources. Multiple media outlets that promote al-Qaida or Islamic State (IS) propaganda have asked supporters in recent weeks to send funds to specific bitcoin addresses. In some cases, these have been Salafi Jihadist news websites purportedly seeking donations for site maintenance. But one campaign–still live as of Dec.20–asks for funds to support fighters in Syria.
Just another aspect of terrorism that must be monitored……but with the turmoil in DC are our Intel agencies capable of watching everything they need to watch?
What will be the future of the Bitcoin craze?
This is a financial bubble….kinda like the tech stocks in the 90’s……