Brian Armstrong, CEO, and Co-Founder, Coinbase, seemingly maintaining distance from the privacy coins like Monero (XMR).
In a podcast “What Bitcoin Did” interview on July 24 with Peter McCormack, Brain Armstrong discussed that the regulators in the United States are not assertive and there is no clarity on the execution of privacy coins.
Privacy coins like Monero (X MR), Zcash (ZEC), Dash (DASH), Grin (GRIN), Komodo (KMD), Verge (XVG), etc. are fully anonymous and allow anonymous execution of transactions which sometimes used in illegal activities such as tax evasion, money laundering are among others financial or non- financial crimes.
Privacy coins are unlike Bitcoin and offer a varying degree of obscurity by concealing wallet addresses detail, details of the sender, and receiver including the transaction trail.
In an interview, Armstrong clarified the reason for not listing privacy coin Monero while saying that XMR is being used in illegal activities/hacks and United Sates not approved so far.
Armstrong wants to provide a practical and beneficial approach to Coinbase and considers the long-standing term for one of the oldest cryptocurrency exchanges while complying with the regulatory norms and trying to stay away form privacy coins including Monero.
“I like to list Monero but this is the issue with the regulators. Privacy coins are one of the next things on the horizon amongst many”… like Bitcoin was earlier. With enough time and education, people would get to know and get comfortable with it to make it mainstream. Said Armstrong.
At present, the San Francisco-based cryptocurrency exchange/ broker providing fiat options of trading in Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin, Ethereum, Tezos, Ethereum Classic, including others in approx.. 32 countries. Additionally, the exchange is offering bitcoin transactions and storage in 190 countries.
Monero (XMR) Ransomware Attack
On July 19, a $7.5M Monero ransomware attack was noticed on Argentina’s largest telecommunications company “Telecom”. Hackers deployed Monero as their payoff to get the ransom and asked the victim to pay an additional $15 million if unable to fulfill the demands within 48 hours.
Earlier on June 30, 2020, the revenue service of the United States federal government- the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has revealed that Criminal Investigation Division (CID) of the body is trying to gain the visibility on privacy coins transactions via Pilot IRS and started hiring private contractors for more information on privacy coins transactions deployed in illicit activities.
Also, the division has started to look out for the technological systems/solutions that can be beneficial to trace privacy coins, side chains (like Plasma and OmiseGo), and layer 2 off-chain protocol networks (e.g., Lightning Network (LN), Raiden Network, Celer Network).