Feeds

US senator asks: Will Bitcoin replace Swiss bank accounts?

'I have been worried about that Bitcoin some," chips in fellow dinosaur learned legislator

High performance access to file storage

Senators have held a second hearing on Bitcoin as America's dinosaur politicians struggle to get to grips with the cryptocurrency.

On the second day of the hearing seven senators attended, as compared to just one in the initial proceedings on Monday.

Tuesday's panel included Ernie Allen, CEO of the International Centre for Missing & Exploited Children, who discussed the use of Bitcoin among paedophiles who use it to pay for child abuse images. Patrick Murck from the Bitcoin Foundation also spoke, along with Jeremy Allaire, CEO of the digital currency firm Circle, and Jerry Brito, a fellow from the Mercatus Center within George Mason University.

Senators wanted to know if Bitcoin was being used by terrorists, paedos, money launderers and other criminals. But their knowledge of the matter was limited at best.

“I have been worried about that bitcoin some,” said Senator Mark Kirk, who is the Republican representative for Illinois.

“Are Bitcoin wallets going to replace the Swiss bank account?” asked Jeff Merkley, a Democrat Senator for Oregon, who was worried about money laundering.

Another senator was a little more honest in his appraisal. Senator Mark Warner of Virginia observed that Bitcoin could "dramatically transform" the role of central banks.

“I’ve been following the development of Bitcoin for the last two months and I think I’m only starting to wrap my head around the potential upside [and] downside,” he confessed.

The hearings were set up to increase understanding of Bitcoin and its implications.

Jennifer Shasky Calvery, director of the Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, reassured nervous senators that despite the "possibility and vulnerability", she had no intelligence which pointed to terrorists using Bitcoin. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Android engineer: We DIDN'T copy Apple OR follow Samsung's orders
Veep testifies for Samsung during Apple patent trial
One year on: diplomatic fail as Chinese APT gangs get back to work
Mandiant says past 12 months shows Beijing won't call off its hackers
Big Content goes after Kim Dotcom
Six studios sling sueballs at dead download destination
Alphadex fires back at British Gas with overcharging allegation
Brit colo outfit says it paid for 347KVA, has been charged for 1940KVA
Jack the RIPA: Blighty cops ignore law, retain innocents' comms data
Prime minister: Nothing to see here, go about your business
Singapore decides 'three strikes' laws are too intrusive
When even a prurient island nation thinks an idea is dodgy it has problems
Banks slap Olympus with £160 MEEELLION lawsuit
Scandal hit camera maker just can't shake off its past
France bans managers from contacting workers outside business hours
«Email? Mais non ... il est plus tard que six heures du soir!»
Reprieve for Weev: Court disowns AT&T hacker's conviction
Appeals court strikes down landmark sentence
US taxman blows Win XP deadline, must now spend millions on custom support
Gov't IT likened to 'a Model T with a lot of things on top of it'
prev story

Whitepapers

Mainstay ROI - Does application security pay?
In this whitepaper learn how you and your enterprise might benefit from better software security.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.