Vanuatu offers citizenship for 44 BTC

A Pacific island nation, the Republic of Vanuatu, is now accepting Bitcoins for citizenship and passports
10 October 2017   645

A Pacific island nation, the Republic of Vanuatu, officially offers the opportunity to become a citizen of the country (during its citizenship-by-investment program) in less than 44 Bitcoins ($200,000).

Vanuatu Information Centre
an image from Vanuatu Information Centre

According to the press release,the Vanuatu Information Center is authorized by the government to process applications.

Thus, through the citizenship-by-investment program, approved applicants paying the $280,000 fee receive citizenship as well as Vanuatu passports for themselves and up to three members of their immediate family.

Geoffrey Bond, Member of Parliament Hon. Andrew Solomon Napuat, confirmed that the Vanuatu government supports the move to receive payments in Bitcoin. The man detailed that “all Bitcoin transactions will be run through the partner’s Australian Exchange and meet with the normal compliance requirements imposed by the Australian Financial Regulator.”

Yet, Vanuatu is not the only country to offer a citizenship-by-investment service. Its competitors in this field include Turkey, Malta, Cyprus, Dominica, St. Lucia, Antigua and Barbuda, St. Kitts and Nevis, and Grenada.

NSA Tracks BTC Users, Snowden Says

According to the documents from former NSA agent, BTC transaction monitoring is one of the main priorities of the agency
21 March 2018   218

The US National Security Agency monitors actions in the bitcoin blovkchain in order to identify users of crypto currency. This is reported by The Intercept, which received a set of documents from a former employee of the NSA Edward Snowden, according to which the monitoring of BTC transactions is one of the main priorities of the agency.

They also say that the work of the NSA in this direction may not be limited to analyzing the blockchain and include the detection of crypto users.

The published document indicates that the NSA has become more likely to collect passwords of bitcoin users, data about their activity on the Internet and the identity of their devices.

According to the report, the NSA monitors bitcoin users from 2013 through a program code-named OAKSTAR, as well as the MONKEYROCKET program, which is the OAKSTAR project. The data collected over the years can allow the NSA to accurately identify participants in crypto-currency transactions.

For information on bitcoin users, the NSA can use XKeyScore, a powerful system for monitoring Internet activity, which became known in 2013, when Snowden revealed information about the surveillance of the NSA.

The document says that the information collected by the Agency is stored in the file "Provider user full.csv", and details of identification of time stamps and Internet addresses of users for the purpose of determining their location are given.