Zcash (ZEC), a privacy coin launched in 2016, unveiled an update to its system on May 31 that will allow users to more easily make private, trustless digital cash payments on mobile phones. Not everyone will see this as a good development.

- Advertisement -

The ignorance, uncertainty, and public intrigue surrounding privacy, including its complexity, misuse, and speculative activity, creates a number of challenges and reputational issues for innovative crypto projects. While privacy is a core principle and a source of pride among crypto projects like Zcash, privacy has been demonized by those in power, including legislators, regulators, banks and academics.

- Advertisement -

However, frequent hacks and data leaks show that the need to protect people’s privacy is more important than ever. This is where crypto firms can enter into dialogue and advocate for these vital consumer protections through privacy-focused projects.

- Advertisement -

What are privacy coins and how are they different from bitcoins?

Consumer sentiment and corporate abuse

Sentiment about the need for privacy of data and financial information went mainstream after the extraordinary revelations of the Equifax hack in 2017. came ignite. The most sensitive financial information of nearly every American household has been passed into the hands of third party vendors without their knowledge or informed consent and has not been adequately protected.

Americans have long been walled off from our most sensitive financial information. Due to Equifax’s negligence, we now know how vulnerable our privacy and financial security is. Things only got worse in the following years. almost 294 million people. affected due to data breaches in 2021 with over 18.5 million records exposed. This has been the worst year for corporate data breaches since 2017.

Takeaway: The crypto industry needs a villain. We need to actively work with key consumers to remind them of the unethical practices of companies that do not protect their information and use it fraudulently. But it can’t be a “demolish everything and log out” message. We also need to educate people about how Web3 prevents this but allows them to control their data.

The Loss of Privacy: Why We Should Fight for a Decentralized Future

Politicians pay attention

The scandal surrounding the loss of control over our financial information caught the attention of politicians, some of whom said that “financial data should be treated with the same confidentiality as medical records.” from this rhetoric? A little. Like Cristiano Lima from the Washington Post put It:

“While there is broad agreement that Congress needs to do more than just talk — in particular, set rules for the collection and use of consumer data — action remains elusive.”

Why is it important? Americans cannot rely on legislators to protect their privacy.

Takeaway: Americans are increasingly disillusioned with big tech, and trust in government is at an all-time low. There is an opportunity to drive a wedge and tap into those feelings while maintaining a “privacy first” attitude that empowers Americans to seek protection on their own.

Message designs should establish three aspects: 1) why people should want and need everything from their data to their text messages to be private; 2) the extent to which our legal privacy rights – and thus our financial destinies – have been compromised and removed from our control; and 3) privacy is a constitutional right that most Americans want.​

Self-storage, control and identification: how regulators got it wrong

Stigma against cryptography

But we must turn to the gorilla in the room. The privacy conversation has been the subject of intense media, law enforcement, and various regulatory scrutiny, and we are losing the battle to define our own industry. Take this quote from US Senator Elizabeth Warren:

“DeFi is the most dangerous part of the crypto world. […] This is where scammers, scammers, and scammers mix between part-time investors and aspiring cryptocurrency traders.”

The common denominator of these attacks is that they view the privacy power of cryptography — its breakthrough development as a nearly impenetrable means to protect the identities of its users and their financial information — and position it as highly negative. Conclusion: Privacy projects are designed as a tool for drug dealers, suspicious transactions, and evasion from law enforcement, regulators, and tax collectors.

Takeaway: If this characterization goes unanswered, privacy-focused crypto projects will not only allow their brand positioning to be stolen, but subject themselves to additional scrutiny, negative coverage, investigations, and possible lawsuits — all of which can have a negative impact on their value and longevity. Inaction is not an option.

In Defense of Crypto: Why Digital Currencies Deserve a Better Reputation

Unfortunately, we have not been able to truly organize and create an industry-wide plan that will resonate with our target audience and expand our movement. Until we do this, we will let others define us, which could lead to our demise.

So, we must normalize privacy, demystify it and, most importantly, find allies in our cause. To do this, projects and privacy advocates – inside and outside of cryptography – must come together under a united front.

This article does not contain investment advice or recommendations. Every investment and trading step involves risk, and readers should do their own research when making a decision.

The views, thoughts and opinions expressed here are those of the author only and do not necessarily reflect or represent the views and opinions of Cryptooshala.

Trey Ditto is the founder and CEO of DittoPR. Trey is a former Associated Press journalist and former Deputy Spokesperson for the U.S. Secretary of Education, Margaret Spellings, and a communications leader in the crypto industry.