Snowden said that “[e]verbody is focused on the transaction rate limitations of bitcoin being its central flaw, and that is a major one, but … the long-lasting flaw, is its public ledger”. Snowden elaborated that “you cannot have a lifelong history of everyone’s purchases” because it does not “work out well at scale.” Snowden admitted that Bitcoin will still have an “enduring value for a long time”, but that the core development team needs to improve their rate of development or they will not be able to compete.
Snowden hinted that he once used Bitcoin to hide his identity when he revealed privacy abuse by the NSA including the NSA spying on Bitcoin users. However, Snowden now prefers Zcash since its techniques to encrypt blockchain data was developed by academic cryptographers.
Quest for privacy
Snowden’s NSA revelations revealed how much governments spy on their own citizens and the importance of privacy. Bitcoin was initially believed to be extremely private because each user was only identifiable via their wallet address, which was a string of cryptographic characters. However, governments eventually developed methods to leverage Bitcoin’s public ledger to track and identify Bitcoin users, which made Bitcoin only psudo-private. As a solution, more cryptocurrencies began to emerge that met the demands for greater privacy and made it much harder to track users.
Snowden prefers Zcash, but Monero is also a major privacy centered cryptocurrency. These coins have seen rapid increases in their price over the past year, which a portion of can be attributed to the demand for privacy centered coins. This demonstrates that there is a demand not only for sound money separate from the current monetary/financial system, but also money that grants more privacy. It has also been shown, contrary to popular belief, the demand for private cryptocurrencies is not primarily for criminal activities. This supports Snowden’s comments that more private cryptocurrencies will win the long term cryptocurrency competition because of the popular and legal demand.
Dash provides a unique risk hedge since it can do both
The advantage of Dash is that its blockchain is structured both as a pseudo-private layer like Bitcoin and as a private layer via PrivateSend. These features allows consumers to have both options within one cryptocurrency without having to initiate an exchange. This dual-feature also adds to the argument that criminal activity is minimal since Dash is being used simultaneously by people who seek privacy and people who use the public ledger. The combination of these features makes Dash a unique risk hedge within the cryptocurrency space.
Whether public or private ledgers win in the crypto marketplace, Dash will occupy both spaces. As governments attempt to regulate privacy-centered cryptocurrencies, Dash provides a solid defense, with its wide reaching legal and open marketplaces, against many potential arguments of criminal activity. Dash is able to add sustainable privacy to its repertoire of providing sound money alternatives to the current financial and monetary system.
Written by: Justin Szilard