CNBC’s co-host Joe Kernen brought up the subject of Bitcoin in terms of terrorism. Kernan raised the question in light of geopolitical tensions in the Middle East. Specifically, Kernen recalled a viral claim by U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin that cash is not used for nefarious activities like Bitcoin is.
United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo believes that Bitcoin should be regulated the same way as other electronic financial transactions.
Security risks of reduced governmental monitoring
In an interview on Squawk Box on Aug. 20, Pompeo pointed out the risk of anonymous transactions associated with crypto, saying:
“The risk with anonymous transactions is one that we all know well. We know this from 9/11 and terror activity that took place in the 15 years preceding that where we didn’t have good tracking, we didn’t have the capacity to understand money flows and who was moving money.”
When asked for his stance towards Mnuchin’s statements, Pompeo appeared to support the Secretary to a degree, expressing his hope that crypto and anonymous transactions will not become the norm since that “would decrease the security for the world.”
However, in contrast to Mnuchin’s intentions to enforce strong regulations in the space, Pompeo expressed his vision of regulating Bitcoin the same way as all other electronic financial transactions today.
Recently, a former exec at German multinational investment bank Deutsche Bank published an article urging that Bitcoin is a leading indicator of hidden geopolitical tensions.