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The Navy SEAL of Money, KYC-Free Bitcoin

Q&A with Diverter – Featured Presenter at Bear Arms N’ Bitcoin 2021

Our annual freedom technology conference Bear Arms N’ Bitcoin is only eleven weeks away. In this week’s newsletter we pose some questions to one of our many accomplished speakers, Diverter. He wrote Mining for the Streets – Simple Guide for Acquiring Bitcoin Without KYC/AML Using ASIC Mining”.

GNB: What are the dangers of acquiring bitcoin with third parties who must comply with KYC/AML regulations?

Diverter: The dangers of bending to the will of regulators enforcing KYC/AML on Bitcoin users are readily apparent—Registration leads to confiscation. Nick Szabo’s legendary assertion that “trusted third parties are security holes” is more than just some quaint adage. It is a mantra.

Bitcoin protects your identity by default at the protocol layer. However, the baked-in pseudonymity offered is completely destroyed once you submit your name, SSN, DOB, and selfie to a crypto exchange. Now your identity is attached to financial transactions, visible to the entire world, and etched into the blockchain for as long as bitcoin exists. I’m not sure about you, but as for myself, I would rather not have 100% deterministic links visible to everyone showing I made a donation to fund development of a “ghost gun” (or whatever scary word they’ll use) for all time, especially knowing the incoming administration’s stance on guns.

There’s a fine, and often blurry, line between being brave and being stupid. It isn’t my fear of these agencies leading me to hide my bitcoin identity; it is my identity being hidden which is leading me to be fearless in the face of upcoming challenges.

GNB: What are you doing to help people acquire bitcoin without KYC/AML?

Diverter: I would like to think I have helped people at least begin to think more about the amount of their identity they are willing to reveal just to participate in a “permissionless” network. With so much data collection around us everyday, it can become quite normalized. Recognition of the problem is a huge first step that I strive to get out there.

In practice, I have had several people contact me on various platforms seeking more information; whether that be helping people get started mining and choosing the right miner or pool for them, or others just looking for peer-to-peer exchanges to use so they can avoid these invasive regulations. These “other” exchanges will never receive the same kind of media push as the likes of Coinbase, and so they’ll likely never have equal liquidity or recognition. But the other thing they’ll never have which Coinbase does is active contracts with the DEA, IRS, and Secret Service to track the bitcoin usage of their customers.

The choice between privacy and convenience becomes much easier to make once you fully realize what is at stake. I have spent countless hours helping guide users toward methods of bitcoin acquisition which empower them, not regulators. I’m not getting the least bit tired of doing it, either.

GNB: What are you most looking forward to at Bear Arms N’ Bitcoin?

Diverter: Easily the thing I most look forward to at BANB2021 is the personal interaction with like-minded and curious individuals. It is amazing to see how many others feel just as strongly about freedom and the technology we can use to protect it as I do.

The Guns ‘n Bitcoin team, along with their amazing sponsors, did a wonderful job last year of allowing everyone to decide for themselves how much (or how little) they wanted to reveal to others. This didn’t hinder interaction or participation at all; rather, it enabled a comfortable, safe, welcoming environment for everyone. I know things will only improve as this conference grows and ages.

It is virtually guaranteed you will be able to learn more about both bitcoin and guns from the terrific list of presenters, and for that I’m grateful. But not nearly as grateful as I am for the chance to shake the hands of fellow freedom enthusiasts from all walks of life, and to make connections that will last far longer than two days.