The top privacy coin Monero is frequently in news headlines whenever it is used by criminals. “Why are More Cybercriminal Using Monero Cryptocurrency?” “The Bitcoin Competitor Beloved by the Alt-Right and Criminals.” “Hackers Use ‘Spiderman: No Way Home’ to spread Monero Mining Malware.” These types of news headers create FUD (fear, uncertainty, and doubt) that can mislead readers into thinking that Monero is illegal. Even casual crypto enthusiasts may get this idea, as some countries have banned XMR and several crypto exchanges around the world have delisted it.
Monero is LEGAL, and its developers did not intend to use it for crime. To better understand why Monero was created, it is worth reading a bit about the gravity of financial privacy and the history of blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies.
Why is financial privacy so important? Privacy International answers, “potential infringements of financial privacy arise during the tracking of foreign transactions, the development of payment systems that monitor and report on cash transactions and the sharing of financial information with third parties.” They also say financial institutions are collecting customer information that goes beyond legitimate purposes, such as tax administration and prevention of money laundering.
Clients cannot observe or track the traditional banking system. The lack of transparency creates risks, and financial losses can happen when a bank is negligent of their responsibilities. Blockchain technology lessens the risks because it creates a public ledger where you can use, view, and verify. Transactions are simple and quick. You do not need to trust your funds to a third party, and they are pseudo-anonymous. They are pseudo-anonymous because the ledger on a blockchain is public. You can see fund balances, transaction amounts, and their blockchain addresses. There is also the risk that your address on the network will be linked to your real-life identity.
Monero has a suite of technologies that keeps parties’ identities, transactions, balances, and transaction amounts anonymous. Its “privacy by default” design enables validation of transactions without revealing sensitive information. Unfortunately, this is the same thing that makes Monero very attractive to criminals. Barney Tan, a professor at the University of New South Wales, said, “My view is that the two main reasons for acquiring monero currently are speculation and illicit activities. No one is acquiring Monero to buy groceries,”
It is, however, unfair to say that only lawbreakers use XMR or any other cryptocurrency. Marcus de Maria said in an article on Association of MBAs, “There is no denying that cryptocurrency has been used for criminal activity, but this can also be said for every different variation of money worldwide. The most popular currency for these types of activities is the US dollar.”
Monero and other cryptocurrencies have legitimate uses. Naturally, Monero users are those who put a premium on personal and financial privacy. XMR is a digital currency and can be used:
1. To pay for goods and services in over 1,200 establishments;
2. To transfer money quickly with lower fees;
3. As a mode of payment in your business;
4. As a secure alternative store of wealth that is censorship-resistant, especially for people who live in countries with authoritarian regimes and those without access to traditional banks;
5. As an investment-forecasters predict XMR can reach $1,000 by the end of 2025; and
6. For donations to charitable institutions and non-government organizations.
No matter how you use XMR, it is essential to get a Monero wallet to keep your funds safely. You cannot send or receive Monero without a Monero wallet and you will need a wallet that enables you to have faster, easier, and uninterrupted transactions. XMRWallet is an open-source Monero wallet that is web-based. With XMRWallet, you will be in complete control of your keys and coins and logs are not kept. Create an XMRWallet and expand the privacy that XMR guarantees.
To ensure complete privacy online, make it a habit to:
– Turn on your privacy settings while browsing.
– Use secure networks to make financial transactions, and take advantage of VPNs.
– Be careful with clicking links and downloading apps.
– Choose strong passwords for your accounts.
– Update your antivirus and malware software.
– Use cold wallets for the bulk of your digital assets.
– Store your seed phrases in different devices and locations.