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Canada May Make Financial Surveillance Measures ‘Permanent’

2 mins
Updated by Kyle Baird
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In Brief

  • Canada's emergency act led to increased financial surveillance, including cryptocurrencies.
  • Investment in the Purpose bitcoin spot ETF spiked considerably, with over 1,200 BTC recorded on Feb 18.
  • Investors are seeing bitcoin and cryptocurrencies as a way to have more control over their wealth.
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Reports are emerging that Canada could make the recent financial surveillance laws permanent. Cryptocurrency platforms would be affected by the matter, and many Canadians are taking to the ownership of bitcoin to have more control over their wealth.

The emergency act invoked by Canada’s government is taking a turn for the worse as far as financial surveillance is concerned. Canadian Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland said during a press conference that the government is reviewing making the surveillance over financial transactions brought by the act permanent.

The trucker convoy protest in Ottawa led to the government imposing surveillance to prevent funding for the protest. This includes regulating crowdfunding platforms and cryptocurrencies under the Terrorist Financing Act. Related payments providers were also commanded to register under FINTRAC.

The move understandably resulted in a lot of condemnation, with critics saying that the move was undemocratic. Several accounts were frozen, and large crypto donations are now under scrutiny from law enforcement officials.

Unfortunately, the move seems to be targeting the innocent as well. True North reported that a journalist had her bank accounts “frozen for the crime of telling the truth.” Small businesses were reportedly also subject to harassment.

Purpose Bitcoin ETF: glassnode

But the move has backfired in part, as numbers show that more people in Canada are taking to cryptocurrencies. Purpose’s Canadian Bitcoin Spot ETF saw an inflow of over 1,200 in a day.

Citizens do appear to be looking at crypto as an alternative asset that is safe from the hands of an overreaching government, which is partially how it was intended to be when it first launched.

Crypto an asset truly in holder’s hands

Crypto has long been touted as an asset that is for the most part out of the controlling hands of a government. The recent acts in Canada seem to serve as another example of that. More proof comes in the form of the fact that Canadians are withdrawing money from banks in staggering numbers.

That move was planned in advance, and even Kraken’s CEO Jesse Powell said that Kraken might be asked to freeze assets by police. He said that the exchange would be forced to comply and that citizens would have to turn to decentralized platforms to ensure ownership of their funds.

Some analysts believe that this could spur growth in the crypto market, as citizens want to maintain sovereignty over their funds. PlanB said the Canada incident might be “the next Cyprus moment for bitcoin.”

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Rahul Nambiampurath
Rahul Nambiampurath's cryptocurrency journey first began in 2014 when he stumbled upon Satoshi's Bitcoin whitepaper. With a bachelor's degree in Commerce and an MBA in Finance from Sikkim Manipal University, he was among the few that first recognized the sheer untapped potential of decentralized technologies. Since then, he has helped DeFi platforms like Balancer and Sidus Heroes — a web3 metaverse — as well as CEXs like Bitso (Mexico's biggest) and Overbit to reach new heights with his...