Ian Thornton-Trump is a keynote speaker and renowned cryptographic and technology security guru.
With the rise of cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Thornton-Trump is a cryptocurrency speaker who has a wealth of experience of cryptography. His experiences range from his time in the military handling classified information to understanding how cryptography impacts sensitive law enforcement investigations, into the activities of cyber criminals.
London Speaker Bureau interviewed the cryptocurrency expert recently to gain his perspective on how cryptocurrency could affect government, business and our day to day lives. Read on to hear what Thornton-Trump predicts for the future of cryptocurrency and its potential dangers.
What are the most pressing dangers of cryptocurrencies?
The hype and mania surrounding cryptocurrencies which once again connect “There is a sucker born every minute” with “get rich quick”. The internet is the domain of criminal predators who will absolutely leverage this trend for their own benefit.
How could cryptocurrencies disrupt business as we know it?
I don’t think disrupt is the right word, unless you are taking about criminal activity associated with cryptocurrencies such as ransomware and “crypto jacking” infrastructure attacks. I see industries growing from cryptocurrencies such as exchanges into “real” money, so there will be economic opportunity. BlockChain (The foundation of crypto currencies) has been around for 8 years and the only thing (so far) it seems to be doing is supporting cryptocurrencies.
What are the potential effects that cryptocurrencies could have on governments?
Governments have concerns for the stability of their economic systems and cryptocurrencies present a minor threat to that stability. In general, and due to taxation and excise the “anonymous” movement of money using cryptocurrencies may be used for criminal activities ranging from tax avoidance to facilitation of all kinds of malicious activity. Some may go so far as to suggest that governments support traditional banking through central banking and IMF structures; and cryptocurrencies work beyond the confines of those structures and are undesirable, especially if sanction mechanisms are bypassed by the use of BTC.
What are your predictions for the future of cryptocurrencies?
I think many people will lose money, a few folks will make a lot of money (exchanges) and after several years the price of cryptocurrencies will stabilise. It may one day provide a mechanism for central banks to move large sums of money between institutions; but until attribution, taxation and financial regulations are established cryptocurrencies will have limited appeal. If the vast amount of transactions in cryptocurrencies are part of criminal activity; they will soon have a stigma attached to them and loose appeal for legitimate financial endeavours.
What are your favourite topics to speak about?
The relationship people have to their technology, especially when it comes to online crime. Both victim, defender and perpetrator have stories to tell and information to share. Human nature has not changed very much since Roman times and even before then; all we are witnessing is the birth of a new place, the internet to conduct business or criminal activity.
Learn more about Ian Thornton-Trump
With a wealth of experience of cryptography, Ian Thornton-Trump is well-placed to analyse digital currency. He describes Bitcoin as an anonymous currency and a potentially gigantic insider crypto mining threat to a business, if that business does not have provisioning and financial controls in place. He warns that cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin are a result of both success in anti-money laundering efforts, and a failure to innovate to securely transfer money between institutions and individuals.
Ian Thornton-Trump can share his thoughts on one of the most captivating public policy discussions of our time: To crypto or To Not crypto?