Achieving financial freedom using cryptocurrencies

Let me introduce myself

  • Cryptoanarchist & voluntaryist focused on technology and society hacking
  • IT security guy, founder of IT security hacking companies (Nethemba, Hacktrophy) & contemporary art (Satori)
  • Co-founder of Bratislava's and Prague's hackerspaces (Progressbar & Paralelni Polis)
  • Member of Czech contemporary anti-government artistic group Ztohoven
  • Responsible for many anti-government & digital privacy projects,

Why do we need financial freedom?

  • Tracking & monitoring financial transactions by banks /governments represents a drastic intervention to citizens' digital privacy
  • Above some cash limits, you cannot avoid using bank accounts even if you don't trust banks
    • There were many incidents in the past when bank employees misused sensitive customer's information
  • Information exchanged by OECD CRS can be  leaked (by potential hacking attack or internal employees)
  • Banks can block your transactions because they are suspicious, you have a burden to prove your innocence

Why do we need a financial freedom II?

  • Prohibition of anonymous cash in many countries above some limits including Czech and Slovak Republic, and it is becoming worse (India)
  • KYC, AML and other "financial dictatorship promoting" regulations
  • The card payment companies, banks, government institutions - all of them can easily track your financial transactions
  • When you receive a "suspicious" bank transaction or from a "suspicious" country (e.g. offshore), the bank sends automated notifications to the government officials...
  • International payments (out of euro-zone) are thoroughly inspected, blocked by banks requiring a lot of bureaucracy

Why do we need a financial freedom III?

  • 100% protection of your assets against the government (especially when you use truly anonymous cash)
  • The government can:
    • freeze your bank account
    • take your physical cash or gold
    • take your property or land
    • suspend your bussiness

Real digital privacy starts with protection your financial transactions

Bitcoin is not anonymous

  • In addition to Bitcoin, there are true anonymous cryptocurrencies
    • Monero - Ring Signatures (fungibility)
    • ZCash - zk-Snark (fungibility), requires a trusted setup
    • ZCoin - Zerocoin protocol 
    • - Ring Signatures, proof of stake
  • Ring Signatures is more verified/stable crypto than zk-Snark/zerocoin protocol
  • Bitcoin Lightning Network (Onion routed micropayments)
  • Bitcoin (especially when you change recipient addresses frequently) can still provide you a significantly better privacy than a traditional banking system

Anonymous cryptocurrency exchanges

  • The most popular ones (Coinbase, Kraken, Bitstamp, Bitfinex, Btc-e) are definitely not anonymous and have to follow AML/KYC regulations, expect governments can know everything about your Bitcoin trades
  • (prefer trusted people trading with cash, public places for a physical exchange, use Tor & anonymous email)
  • (prefer trusted people trading with cash)
  • Use your local anonymous Bitcoin ATM (expect 3% fee)
  • Contact your local hackerspace (Parallel Polis, Progressbar)

Pay your bills with bitcoins -

  • If you want BTC SEPA gateways, you always have to be verified for transactions above certain limits (e.g. 500 EUR/monthly), you can have multiple "anonymous profiles", but they can be revealed if you do payments to the same bank accounts
  • (be aware, it follows KYC/AML)
    • allows you to make SEPA transactions up to 50000 EUR (after Skype verification) with 0.5%
    • allows many international currencies (but it's still expensive for CZK, use Simplecoin instead)
    • allows multi-pay transactions at once (you can use it for all your regular monthly payments)
    • through shapeshift plugin you can use arbitrary altcoins

Use local bitcoin gateways

  • In order to avoid high fees for incoming SEPA payments, use cheaper local bitcoin gateways
  • Or visit Paralelni Polis community! :-)

Use Bitcoin debit cards

  • Anonymous debit cards without verification allow only small life-time limits (up to 2000-2500 EUR), you can ask for many of them for many different persons, but you need to pay about 12 EUR/yearly per each of them
  • Probably the best non-anonymous cards are (true-bitcoin debit card),,,, uquid
  • + can be topped up with altcoins (including Monero and ZCash through plugin)
  • Most of these cards are issued by the same issuer (Wave Crest Holdings limited) and have the same fees (2.25 EUR - ATM withdrawal fee, 3% for foreign currency withdrawals/purchase)

Consider to use Revolut

  • Revolut is not a bitcoin debit card, but it has a strong competitive advantage - free ATM withdrawals anywhere in the world up to 200 GBP/monthly (then 2%), free currency exchanges up to 5000 GBP/monthly (then 0.5%)
  • Ideal debit card for travelling if you want to have best currency exchange rates
  • It can be topped up by any Bitcoin debit card (!)
  • There is a yearly limit of 15000 EUR (after reaching the limit, it is necessary to prove the source if your income)
  • Any other debit cards with similar features as Revolut? (Monzo?)
  • They have just launched the business accounts!

Invoice your customers in fiat, but receive BTC

  • Check
    • If you are an entrepreneur / small company, you don't need a bank account, just issue the invoice with, they generate unique SEPA payment details, the customer will pay your invoice and you receive bitcoins only
    • It requires your personal verification (a photo with your personal ID)
    • there is no similar anonymous service (probably because of money laundering)

Bitcoin mixing services XMR.TO

  • Send your anonymous Monero and receive "clean" bitcoins (Monero transactions are anonymous by default)
  • It works through Tor network as well
  • Fair conversion rates
  • Be aware there are multiple "blockchain forensic agencies" working for Interpol / governments - using mixing service you can easily destroy your real Bitcoin blockchain history
  • You can buy your Monero (below specific limits) using in a completely anonymous way

Let's switch to complete bankless setup

  • Issue all invoices to your customers using
  • Prefer direct bitcoin payments everywhere as possible
    • Check
  • Pay all bills using (including multi payments)
  • Pay the rest using your bitcoin debit cards (if you travel a lot, use Revolut topped up by your bitcoin debit cards)

Bankless setup - more anonymous scenario

  • Invoice your customers directly in Bitcoins / Monero
  • Laundry your received Bitcoins using XMR.TO
  • Prefer direct bitcoin payments everywhere as possible
    • Check
  • Pay all bills using (including multi payments) with your anonymous accounts (be aware of 500 EUR monthly limits)
  • Pay the rest using your anonymous debit cards (be aware of 2000 EUR lifetime limits)
  • Never use Revolut (it's not anonymous)

True anonymous cryptocurrencies how to

  • Monero (a simple wallet with GUI, can be bought at using fiat or using through using Bitcoins)
  • ZCash (now supported by Bitcoin Trezor)
  • Dash (marketing hype, now supported by Bitcoin Trezor)
  • Shadow Cash (Shadow project seems to be a complex decentralized system, probably the follower of the Silk Road market?)

Bitcoin vs. Monero

  • Bitcoin is too legal & popular
    • the Bitcoin rate reflects political events / decisions (e.g. ETF, the state prohibition, etc)
    • it reflects "the real world" a lot
  • Monero is becoming a default dark-market cryptocurrency
    • despite the fact it is still related to the Bitcoin rate, it doesn't care much about "the real world"
    • the biggest threat for Monero would be probably a full world's legalization of all drugs & guns (the reason why people prefer true anonymous cryptocurrencies :-)
    • FBI is afraid of Monero
    • Monero is ATH just now!

The privacy of government fiat money is dead.

Long life to anonymous cryptocurrencies!

Thanks a lot for your attention!