Nunchuk crypto wallet pushes back on Canadian protests legal order
Crypto wallet provider, Nunchuk, has hit back at an email sent by a Canadian court asking them to freeze and disclose information on their users.
Ongoing “Freedom Convoy” protests in Canada’s capital of Ottawa have seen trucks block roads in protest of COVID-19 vaccine mandates for crossing the United States border. These have evolved into protesting COVID-19 mandates and other restrictions in general.
Canada and the US previously exempted unvaccinated cross-border truckers from COVID-19 vaccine requirements, to prevent aggravating the existing supply chain disruptions, the exemptions expired in late January, leading to the protests.
A campaign on popular crowdfunding website, GoFundMe, raised over US$10 million in donations before GoFundMe stated that the funds would automatically be returned to donors.
After GoFundMe pulled support for the crowdfunding, a group of Supporters known as “HonkHonkHodl” started a campaign on crypto crowdfunding platform, Tallycoin, and reached their goal of raising 21 BTC, or around US$800,000 at today’s Bitcoin price.
About a week ago, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau declared a national public order emergency in a push to end the occupation of Ottawa, the declaration, amongst other powers, allows the government to freeze the bank accounts of protesters, or anyone who had donated to the protesters.
The Ontario Superior Court of Justice issued an injunction against Nunchuk, ordering the company to freeze accounts and disclose information about any assets involved with the protests.
In a Tweet, Nunchuk shared its response, stating that as it is a noncustodial wallet provider, it cannot freeze, prevent, or see any user assets, telling the court to “look up how self custody and private keys work”.
To top off their response, Nunchuck signed off the email by saying, “When the Canadian dollar becomes worthless, we will be here to serve you, too.”
The government’s crypto confusion
Governments around the world are attempting to build regulatory and policing frameworks around cryptocurrencies, especially when they’re used in the context of crime, but there is a clear confusion and lack of knowledge about how blockchains and crypto actually work.
For the first time, cryptocurrencies allow people to retain full and easy control of value. The ability to send that value between people without an intermediary in real-time has serious implications for governments and policing bodies when it becomes important to be able to have access to that data.
So long as the coins or tokens are held in a private wallet, they are completely inaccessible to anyone but the owner. That includes the platform that hosts the wallet, as the Canadian court recently discovered.
At the same time, it’s impossible to remove the financial system from the rest of society, and as long as the rest of society needs currency, the legal, taxation, and social implications of crypto require some regulatory framework be found.
Just across the border, U.S. President, Joe Biden, is set to sign an executive order related to cryptocurrencies next week, for more information on that executive order as it breaks, listen to the first episode of our Defi Digest podcast available on Spotify.