The Bitcoin Rat

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eBay’s Securities and Exchange Commission Report – Dec 2013


ebay report


eBay’s financial report to the United States Securities and Exchange Commission just issued makes interesting, if rather heavy, reading.

This year , eBay has recognised that Bitcoin is going to be a significant potential competition

This is the section of the report worth reading –  ( my highlights in red text )



PayPal also faces competition and potential competition from:
money remitters such as MoneyGram, Western Union, Global Payments, Inc., Xoom and Euronet;
bill payment services, including CheckFree, a subsidiary of Fiserv;
services that provide online merchants the ability to offer their customers the option of paying for purchases from their bank account or paying on credit, including Western Union’s WU Pay, Dwolla, Acculynk, TeleCheck (a subsidiary of First Data), iDEAL in the Netherlands, Klarna in several European countries, Sofortuberweisung (which recently has agreed to merge with Klarna) in Germany, PayLib in France and the MyBank pan-European initiative;
issuers of stored value targeted at online payments, including NetSpend, Green Dot, PayNearMe, UKash and Qiwi in Russia;
other international online payment-services providers such as AliPay, the PayU group of companies (owned by Naspers), PagSeguro and Bcash (owned by Naspers);
other providers of online account-based payments, such as Skrill, ClickandBuy (owned by Deutsche Telekom), Barclays Pingit in the U.K., Kwixo in France, and Paymate and Visa PayClick in Australia;
payment services targeting users of social networks and online gaming, often through billing to the consumer’s mobile phone account, including PlaySpan (owned by Visa), Boku, Bango and Payfone;
payment services enabling banks to offer their online banking customers the ability to send and receive payments through their bank account, including PopMoney from Fiserv, which has a collaboration agreement with Visa, and ClearXchange (a joint venture among Wells Fargo, Bank of America and JP Morgan Chase);
online shopping services that provide special offers linked to a specific payment provider, such as Visa’s RightCliq, MasterCard MarketPlace, TrialPay and Tapjoy;
services such as Coinbase and Bitpay that help merchants accept and manage virtual currencies such as Bitcoin; and


Their report  also gives us a clue as to what their strategy is going to be to counter the threat from Bitcoin – This is the telling section


PayPal’s competitors may be able to innovate and respond to new or emerging technologies and changes in customer requirements faster and more effectively than PayPal. Some of these competitors may also be subject to less burdensome licensing, anti-money laundering, counter-terrorist financing and other regulatory requirements than PayPal, which is subject to additional regulations based on, among other factors, its licensure as a bank in Luxembourg.


So, we can see what their approach is going to be – this sentence puts it very clearly:

“subject to less burdensome licensing, anti-money laundering, counter-terrorist financing”


So be prepared for more claims that Bitcoin is  ” used by money-launderers and terrorists ” !! …

let’s examine the validity of this claim

The current TOTAL market capitalisation of Bitcoin is around $11 billion

The current amount of money-laundering for drugs and terrorism last year was subject to international studies that have estimated that cross-border flows of global proceeds of financial crimes totalled between $1 trillion and $1.6 trillion . ( thats 1,000 times the entire stock of Bitcoins )


some more facts on how the existing Banking Sector supports drugs, terrorism and money laundering


In July 2012 the US Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs issued a 339 page report detailing a  catalogue of ”criminal ” behaviour by London based HSBC. This includes laundering over $881 million for the Mexican Sinaloa Cartel and for the Norte del Valle Cartel in Colombia. Besides this, HSBC affiliated banks such as HBUS repeatedly broke American AML laws by their long standing and severe AML deficiencies which allowed Saudi banks such as Al Rajhi to finance terrorist groups that included Al-Qaeda. HBUS the American affiliate of HSBC suppliedAl Rajhi bank with nearly $1 billion in US dollars.

in addition

Wikipedia gives this historical information


Bank of New York: US$7 billion of Russian capital flight laundered through accounts controlled by bank executives, late 1990’s

Sani Abacha: US$2–5 billion of government assets laundered through Banks in the UK, Luxembourg, Jersey (Channel Islands), and Switzerland, by the president of Nigeria

Standard Chartered: paid $330 million in fines for money-laundering hundreds of billions of dollars for Iran. The money-laundering took place in the 2000s and occurred for “nearly a decade to hide 60,000 transactions worth $250 billion”



United States Department of State Report  2012  – Volume II: Money Laundering and Financial Crimes

United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime  2013


eBays Report to the Securities and Exchange CommissionDec 2013 – IN FULL




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