Donations to neo-Nazis in the United States in the form of Bitcoin and other digital currencies is now on the rise. This news comes just before the United States Right rally scheduled to happen this weekend at the US Capitol.
The rally is scheduled to be held in Washington D.C. on 11 August, and the police and other authorities of the city are now on high alert. The city is now preparing itself for an anticipated 400 extreme rights. This situation had prompted plans for the use of public transportation before and after the rally in order to keep the protestors separate from the general masses; these plans have, however, been dumped.
Beyond the mainstream, however, donations in the form of cryptos to white supremacist groups has begun rising prior to the event. Cryptocurrencies have had a problematic history of being used to fund underground activities like the trafficking of both drugs and humans, as well as usage by fringed political groups. Richard Spencer, spokesperson for the far-right, stated that Bitcoin is indeed the “currency of the alt-right.”
This long association of cryptos with illegal activities had led to many questions regarding the future of alt-coins and if they can ever completely get into the mainstream. While such currencies provide discreet and secure transactions which are favourable to many, the same features make them perfect finding alternate movements where resources are limited.
Far-right website Daily Stormer received funds of about $60,000 in cryptos last year before the Charlottesville United the Right rally. The supremacists who keep the website going also received funds for publishing in the form of coins like Monero (XMR).
Monero is a digital currency that opened up services in 2014, and aims to provide fast and secure transfers, though it currently sells at a lot lower than Bitcoin. Values of cryptos as ascertained through the trade of wealth on a level platform without any traditional constraints. This might be advantageous to international businesses, but it’s also the same for illegal activities, where speed and secrecy is paramount to success.