Q: I’m concerned about things I’ve heard regarding major banks and credit card companies tracking purchases made with firearms and ammunition companies. What can I do to mitigate this risk?
A: We encourage ALL of our customers to begin using Bitcoin for their purchases. Contrary to what you may have heard, Bitcoin is not only for speculation and gambling and it has NOTHING TO DO with the recent news about that kid in the Bahamas who was laundering money for the Democrats. It’s a great method to transfer value from one party to another, and it’s relatively easy to use after you get acquainted with the differences between our current “paper money” economy and the new “digitized value” economy. We should mention that - also contrary to popular belief, is not inherently anonymous; however, there are ways to significantly INCREASE your anonymity using the right tools and the right strategy, outlined below:
1. We realize that MOST PEOPLE are going to acquire their Bitcoin from a brand-name internet exchange (such as Coinbase, or Binance) because they’re easy to use. Having said that - when you purchase Bitcoin on an exchange, it is held and stored in an “exchange wallet; YOU DO NOT WANT TO USE YOUR EXCHANGE WALLET TO STORE A SIGNIFICANT AMOUNT OF BITCOIN, NOR SHOULD YOU MAKE PAYMENTS FOR PURCHASES DIRECTLY FROM YOUR EXCHANGE WALLET.
Instead, we HIGHLY recommend using a self-custody, security minded wallet like Samourai Wallet to store, receive, and make payments with Bitcoin. You can purchase Bitcoin on any popular exchange (i.e. Coinbase, Binance, etc.) and transfer your Bitcoin OFF THE EXCHANGE and into your self-custody wallet. Then, will use your self-custody wallet to send your payment. This is a very important step, and if followed, will reduce your payment signature significantly. The level of anonymity you can achieve will be different depending on what the wallet software was designed for; we personally use and highly recommend Samourai Wallet which can be downloaded HERE, FOR FREE.
2. For the highest security measures possible, we also recommend you consider running your own Bitcoin Node. The Bitcoin core software can be run on almost any old laptop or desktop computer using very little processing power. Bitcoin Nodes are individual copies of the Bitcoin blockchain and are the ‘public ledger’ that keep track of every transaction. New transactions are processed, verified, and gathered into ‘blocks’ which are then added to the blockchain and, in turn, each node.
By running your own node, you are participating in the decentralized transaction verification process and distributed consensus mechanism that makes Bitcoin a trustless, permissionless, self-sovereign payment system. Additionally, many security-oriented Bitcoin wallets allow you to pair your own wallet with your own node. This way, your transactions are broadcast to the blockchain by YOU, reducing your reliance on another party and eliminating the chance of ‘man in the middle’ type surveillance.
3. Work with retailers who accept Bitcoin, and, use open-source payment processing systems like BTCPay – our preferred method. Open-source software is not beholden to any corporate entity. It’s also easy to review the code for security flaws which means it’s inherently more hack resistant.