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Long-time crypto critic surprises with a related warning on privacy

Long-time crypto critic surprises with a related warning on privacy

Molly White, a long-term cryptocurrency critic, recently expressed concerns about governments cracking down on Tornado Cash. Given Molly’s posting history, her warning posed a surprise for many crypto enthusiasts.

Notably, the cryptocurrency mixing service on Ethereum (ETH) has reportedly been used for criminal money laundering, but White worries about the ramifications of this recent court decision.

In her article “Privacy, Human Rights, and Tornado Cash,” Molly White discusses the sentencing of Alexey Pertsev, a Tornado Cash developer and operator. In an unprecedented ruling, a Dutch court sentenced Pertsev to 64 months in prison, as reported by Finbold.

Particularly, despite the service’s involvement in laundering billions of dollars, White is concerned about Pertsev’s conviction and similar cases. As written, she acknowledges that her stance may surprise those who know her as a crypto critic. However, she explains that mixers like Tornado Cash are also used by honest people seeking privacy on public blockchains.

Crypto wars and privacy as a human right

In this context, Molly White believes in the right to write cryptographic code and operate services without liability for criminal activity. She draws parallels to the “Crypto Wars,” where writing cryptographic code was finally considered protected speech in the United States. Additionally, she emphasizes the importance of privacy as a human right.

Privacy is indeed a well-recognized fundamental human right, included in the United Nations (UN) Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article 12, which applies to financial and monetary privacy.

“No one shall be subjected to arbitrary interference with his privacy,  family, home or correspondence, nor to attacks upon his honour and reputation. Everyone has the right to the protection of the law against  such interference or attacks.”

– Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article 12

Moreover, The Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), affiliated with the UN, has set International Standards for Privacy in the Digital Age:

“The right to privacy is central to the enjoyment and exercise of human rights online and offline. It serves as one of the foundations of a democratic society and plays a key role for the realization of a broad spectrum of human rights, including in the digital sphere, ranging from freedom of expression, freedom of association and assembly, access, and enjoyment of economic and social rights. Interference with the right to  privacy can also have a disproportionate impact on certain individuals and/or groups, thus exacerbating inequality and discrimination.”

– International Standards for Privacy in the Digital Age

This strong recognition evidences the importance of peaceful individuals securing their privacy by any means under the presumption of innocence until a harmful crime is effectively committed and properly judged. Thus, this includes the peaceful development and use of privacy tools independently of particularly criminal individuals using the same tool.

In conclusion, the article explores the complexities of financial privacy and the arbitrary nature of regulations. White believes that people should have more financial privacy than they currently do. Furthermore, she clarifies that her cryptocurrency criticism focuses on educating people about a technology that has failed its original ideals.

White is concerned about the lack of financial privacy in the cryptocurrency industry despite it being highly promoted that way. Nevertheless, she worries that cracking down on the industry may weaken financial privacy and hurt vulnerable people.

Finally, while cryptocurrency may not be the best solution for financial privacy, the long-time critic recognizes its potential value in a world with diminishing privacy. Even more, Molly White defends the right of honest people to fight for it despite the current challenges.

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