Lawmakers to Discuss If Crypto Is 'The Future of Money' Next Week

Cryptocurrencies will take center stage once again on Capitol Hill next week.

The U.S. House of Representatives Financial Services Committee announced Thursday that it would host a hearing titled «The Future of Money: Digital Currency» on Wednesday, July 18.

Though the Committee, headed by Chairman Jeb Hensarling, has yet to announce a full list of participating witnesses, CoinDesk confirmed that the event will be livestreamed on its website.

Past hearings by the Committee have seen lawmakers discuss cryptocurrencies through the lenses of terrorism financing and fraudulent investments, as previously reported by CoinDesk.

That being said, it seems the topic of next week's hearing is more geared towards debating the utility of cryptocurrencies as a form of money.

It is a timely topic in light of an increasing interest in cryptocurrencies as a potentially useful monetary tool for governments and more specifically, central banks, around the world. In March, the Bank of International Settlements, what some consider as the central bank to central banks, argued cryptocurrencies backed by central banks could in fact fuel faster bank runs during periods of financial instability.

Other countries including Canada, Finland and South Korea have weighed in on the matter, though responses have been mixed with trepidation.

US Secret Service official calls for ‘anonymity-enhanced’ coins regulation

In his recent address to the Subcommittee on Terrorism and Illicit Finance which is a part of the Financial Services Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives, Secret Service Investigations Office Deputy Assistant Director Robert Novy has stated that anonymous crypto coins should be regulated more tightly.

Along with anonymous cryptocurrencies, third-party blockchain transactions’ anonymizers have been mentioned, as well as cryptocurrency mining pools. What has attracted the attention of the Secret Service in the latter theme remains unknown.

Here is an interesting information for those who follow the news on the US citizens’ privacy laws: the same person calls for the “new reporting requirements or data collection, retention and accessibility requirements for certain businesses or business activities”. This echoes the past event in which Apple openly denied the government access to mobile phones’ data.

Robert Novy has additionally admitted the need of the law enforcement in the highly-skilled cyber sleuths who can follow the latest criminal trends and timely implement countermeasures.