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  1. #1
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    Default Feds proposal to make banks report every time you buy a gun or a couple dozen rounds

    Feds Propose Even More Surveillance of Your Banking Habits

    By lowering the “travel rule” threshold to $250, the government could access more of our financial data.

    Andrea O'Sullivan11.17.2020 8:30 AM
    banksign_1161x653
    (Flynt / Dreamstime.com)

    It is remarkable just how unremarkable America's massive financial surveillance system has become to most people. Americans were rightly outraged when Edward Snowden revealed the government's widespread spying campaigns on online communications. Yet every day, our financial transactions are subject to similar scrutiny. The programs aren't even secret: you can read up about them on official government websites. But for some reason, we accept this surveillance as a fact of life. We shouldn't.

    If you give an agent a surveillance program, he will try to expand it. This is the case with the many legally questionable financial reporting requirements sprung forth from the Bank Secrecy Act of 1970 (BSA), which is kind of like the PATRIOT Act for money.

    Most recently, the Federal Reserve and Treasury Department have proposed expanding what is called the "travel rule" to capture international funds transfers above $250. Currently, financial institutions are required to make certain reports on customers when they send international transactions in excess of $3,000. This has been the threshold since the travel rule was first adopted in the U.S. in 1996, despite inflation since then.

    Here's how it works: Let's say someone wants to send $5,000 to someone else in the U.S. or abroad. That person goes to their bank and tells them where they'd like to send the money. The bank, by law, must collect, store, and send certain identifying data to the receiving financial institution, including the name, address, and account information for the sender and receiver. This data must be passed along intermediary financial institutions and stored for at least five years. It isn't immediately shared with the government unless it is determined to be "suspicious" enough to trigger Suspicious Activity Report (SAR) requirements under the BSA. In other words: banks must keep this data on hand in case the government needs it.

    These surveilled people are suspected of no crime, nor are they given any opportunity to opt out of this data collection. Still, the government preemptively requires that their transactions be tagged and tracked as if they had done something wrong.

    The threat of government involvement is apparent. It has effectively deputized banks to keep treasure troves of transaction data on hand in case it should become useful.

    But there are many other good reasons that innocent people should oppose these programs that don't have to do with the government at all. Forcing third parties to maintain financial records on transactions gives them an intimate window into your life. As Supreme Court Justice William Douglas wrote of the BSA in 1971:

    "The records of checks—now available to the investigators—are highly useful. In a sense, a person is defined by the checks he writes. By examining them, the agents get to know his doctors, lawyers, creditors, political allies, social connections, religious affiliation, educational interests, the papers and magazines he reads, and so on ad infinitum."

    Maybe you just don't want the data quality manager at Bank of America to have access to the knowledge that you've been sending money to your preferred political or religious causes. It's not their business and you haven't done anything wrong. Plus, you need to trust that they will protect this data and not expose it to hacks or leaks. Yet this is the current state of play for American funds transfers, and it may soon be considerably expanded.

    The proposed rule change would apply to traditional currency transfers as well as cryptocurrency transactions. The travel rule also applies to domestic funds transfers, but the limit for those would be kept at $3,000.

    There is some good news: The Treasury Department generally understands the distinction between custodial cryptocurrency transactions (those that are facilitated by third parties like exchanges) and non-custodial or peer-to-peer cryptocurrency transactions that involve no third party. It also understands that software developers and miners have no direct control over fund transfers. Non-custodial transactions, developers, and miners are exempt from surveillance requirements. So there is at least a little bit of privacy breathing room when it comes to non-custodial cryptocurrency uses.

    (Of course, not every federal regulator is this astute when it comes to the networking properties of cryptocurrencies: the Department of Justice recently described the use of privacy-preserving cryptocurrencies to be "a high-risk activity" that is inherently "indicative of possible criminal conduct.")

    Still, it's worrying that government agencies don't even consider personal privacy when proposing new regulations. My colleagues at Coin Center have filed a comment on the proposed travel rule change pointing to the lack of privacy considerations.

    By law, federal agencies must issue cost-benefit analyses that weigh the trade-offs of a proposed new rule to industry and society. The travel rule analysis only considers the costs that would be imposed on banks on regulators. The extreme cost to privacy for millions of Americans is not even an afterthought: it's not a thought at all. That's a big problem.

    If the Federal Reserve and Treasury Department had considered the proposed $250 travel rule's privacy costs on individuals, perhaps it would not pass a cost-benefit test. Actually, maybe it would prompt the agencies to rethink the architecture of our financial surveillance altogether.

    Justice Douglas foresaw the grave dangers to privacy posed by intermediated financial surveillance all the way back in 1971. Today, when so much more of our financial lives are channeled through third parties, the danger is that much greater.

    The many problems with America's financial surveillance system are apparent, setting aside these grave threats to our personal privacy. It creates compliance and hacking risks for institutions that must store this data. And it doesn't even work very well. Criminals are routinely able to get the finance they need despite this web of data tracking. Meanwhile, innocent people may have trouble making transactions or get caught in the hassle of some overzealous agent. It's a big mess.

    Let's hope that financial regulators listen to the many public comments encouraging an explicit consideration of how privacy is affected by financial surveillance programs. But these questions should not only be considered by regulatory agencies: it is perhaps time for the Supreme Court to once again examine the legality of these surveillance programs that hoover so much of our financial lives into exploitable central datasets

    https://reason.com/2020/11/17/feds-p...anking-habits/
    "Cives Arma Ferant"

    "I know I'm not James Bond, that's why I don't keep a loaded gun under the pillow, or bang Russian spies on a regular basis." - GunLawyer001

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Feds proposal to make banks report every time you buy a gun or a couple dozen rou

    This is why I liked buying my ammo at Walmart back in the day.
    Zero record of the purchase. Cashola.
    PAFOA Group Shoot dates for 2021 (click)Next Shoot January 1st!!!

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Feds proposal to make banks report every time you buy a gun or a couple dozen rou

    Doesn't affect me either, I never buy guns or ammo from Dollar Bank...
    All of my guns are lubed with BACON GREASE.

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    Default Re: Feds proposal to make banks report every time you buy a gun or a couple dozen rou

    Suck my CASH!
    I'm a Rep Virgin

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Feds proposal to make banks report every time you buy a gun or a couple dozen rou

    I don't buy or bank overseas.
    I don't speak English , I talk American!

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Feds proposal to make banks report every time you buy a gun or a couple dozen rou

    The major danger in this presentation is NOT the individual nefarious acts by the government that may be perpetrated against individual citizens pursuant to the regulations. It is 'the very fact that the government gives no thought to citizen privacy', just as the article points out.

    As bad as it is when the government uses these regulations to harass a citizen, the underlying disregard for the sanctity of our PRIVACY, demonstrates that there is a wholesale sea change required of our government, but one that is not likely to happen. The very fact that all these agencies operate on this level of disregard for citizens rights demonstrates the existence of the Deep State.

    What most people don't realize is that there need be no conspiracy to direct evil intentions. The very founding of this country was based on The People electing representatives with quality characters that would, above all else, work to protect the basic rights of the citizenry. They were to respect and protect the rights of the people they were to represent. But the electorate has failed in electing people of quality character and those who have been elected (with even a modicum of character) are stonewalled at every turn if they try to do the right thing.

    No conspiracy is required to wreck the Freedom Train from the tracks. Every effort that subjugates The People to The Government has the same overall effect - the destruction of America. The ones who are piling lumber on the tracks to derail the Freedom Train do not need to coordinate with those who are trying to uncouple as many cars as possible. Both are working towards the same end of destroying America and no formal coordination of their efforts are necessary. The mindset of the arsonist who is looking to burn every boxcar on the Freedom Train is, essentially, the same mindset of the ones who are trying to blow up the tracks. All these efforts are destructive of the social order, the way of life and the government Of the People, By the People, For the People.

    The problem with those who are looking for the 'organizers' of the conspiracy is that they will find no such group. But the mindset, so firmly fixed in the 'permanent' Deep State workers, allows them to work in concert to achieve their destructive goals. Like the terrorists we have seen, there may be some in the 'permanent' Deep State who work in interactive groups to destroy America, but most, simply by their mindset, can work totally independently from any coordination to achieve the same goals as might be presented in a group gathering.

    The enemy is invisible because it's an attitude. The attitude that The People do not deserve to be free and independent of governmental control. Privacy must be disregarded in an effort to assure that The People do the right things - the things that these 'elite thinkers' have approved for The People.

    Like all other regulations intended to treat Constitution-abiding citizens as if they are (or will become) criminals, this attitude is based on the desire to create laws and regulations that actually put people at risk of breaking the laws (that are Unconstitutional)!

    If only there was some part of government that was tasked with protecting The People from the Government. Oh, wait, the Founding Fathers designed the Supreme Court to do that. Any law or regulation that did not comport with the structures of the Constitution, or did not respect The Bill of Rights, or violated the inalienable Rights of The People, was to be struck down in no uncertain terms. But, no, there are (and have been) too many activist jurists on that court who consider The Constitution to be outdated, it's language distortable, the interpretation able to be massaged to meet the new desire or the entire document simply ignored when necessary. The result is that the Rights of The People have been disregarded at the very place that was tasked to protect them.

    It will be nearly impossible to clean up the swamp. The Deep State creatures, all with similar mindsets, are scurrying around like termites determined to destroy the structure and fabric of America. The destruction is already pervasive enough to require major reconstruction to restore it.

    The Right to Privacy (like so many of our other Rights) is now treated as a privilege because The People have not demanded and fought to protect it.

    ...

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Feds proposal to make banks report every time you buy a gun or a couple dozen rou

    Last year I had a midnight confrontation with a tow truck driver in my driveway. The police told me that this repo man was on my property at midnight because there was a 3 month old license plate scanner hit in front of my house.

    Now how many police cars do you suppose there are in PA? How many cars do you suppose they pass in a day? How big is this database? What does it cost to maintain it? What benefits does it provide other than giving repo men the opportunity to get shot in the wrong driveway?

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