Privacy Coin

Any cryptocurrency that focuses on maintaining private transactions between users. Examples are Dash, ZCash, and Monero.

Privacy coins are cryptocurrencies that were invented to give users as much financial control and financial privacy as possible. 

Most media might vilify privacy coins, saying they are used for nefarious purposes such as drug trafficking, money laundering, or even terrorism. 

These claims have a small grain of truth to them, just like the fact that cash is also used for such purposes. But to say that the sole purpose of privacy coins is for illegal trade would be, in short, dystopian. Allowing a government, bank, or private company (Venmo, Paypal) to see everything you do with your money because “you have nothing to hide” also opens your door to them profiling you, your spending habits, and then using that data to target market to you or even sell your spending habits to other companies. 

Understandably, many people want privacy in their own home and this should also translate to wanting privacy in your own wallet. 

That’s why there’s an estimated 63 different privacy coins available today. These projects are worth just over $2 billion combined. They each have various unique things about them.

Some allow privacy by default while others ask you to opt in for certain transactions. Some use technology that is brand new and others don’t. Some shield only the sender while others shield everything about the transaction. 

One thing’s for sure: Bitcoin is not a true privacy coin anymore. The Bitcoin blockchain is a public ledger. If you buy Bitcoin with an account that knows your identity (Coinbase) then your spending can then be traced along the blockchain. Even if you buy your bitcoins anonymously, you need to be very careful about where and how you spend them, because transactions can be traced to your IP and other clues about you. 

Find out more about privacy coins and how to use them if you value having full control over your money.