Internet Protects Financial Privacy

A little government always leads to more government. As governments find themselves incapable of eliminating victimless crimes, they instead turn to broader measures to spy and snoop on everybody. These measures include wiretapping, banning encryption and examining people's financial transactions.

Trying to protect your privacy by hiding such information from the government is known variously as tax evasion and money laundering.

The Internet, with its wanton disregard for national boundaries and laws, poses a unique threat to governments trying to persecute people for peaceful actions.

The U.S. government has lately been hinting that the Internet needs more controls to prevent money laundering. In a March 1996 speech, a representative of the Treasury Department's financial crimes enforcement division said that anonymous international cash transfers made possible by the Internet could make it very difficult for goverments to invade financial privacy (I mean, stop money laundering).

Source: March 14, 1996, Reuter Information Service news article, "Internet could become dirty money haven."