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Microsoft founder Bill Gates has slammed cryptocurrencies, calling them “super risky” and “deadly” in his latest Reddit Q&A session.
The billionaire spoke about topics such as quantum computing, his charity work and his career the technology industry.
But he dedicated a significant portion of the interview session to warning people about the dangers of cryptocurrencies. He argued that they could even “cause deaths.
Responding to users, he said: “The main feature of cryptocurrencies is their anonymity. I don’t think this is a good thing.”
He said cryptocurrencies have become the tech of choice for criminals. “Right now, cryptocurrencies are used for buying fentanyl and other drugs, so it is a rare technology that has caused deaths in a fairly direct way,” he explained
One Reddit user asked Gates about the difference between physical and digital currencies.
He responded by saying: “Yes – anonymous cash is used for these kinds of things but you have to be physically present to transfer it, which makes things like kidnapping payments more difficult.”
Gates also issued a warning to people who are investing volatile digital currencies such as bitcoin.
He said “the speculative wave around ICOs and cryptocurrencies is super risky for those who go long”.
2018 has been a whirlwind year for cryptocurrencies. While they have been increasing in value, governments around the globe have been implementing laws to curb their use.
However, Gates has spoken positively about digital cash in the past. Speaking to Bloomberg in 2014, he said Bitcoin is “exciting” because it is so cheap.
He said: “Bitcoin is better than currency in that you don’t have to be physically in the same place and, of course, for large transactions, currency can get pretty inconvenient.”
Other prolific billionaires have warned about the dark side of cryptocurrencies in the past, including Berkshire Hathaway boss Warren Buffett.
In an interview with CNBC, he said they will result in “a bad ending”. The influential investor said: “Now, when it happens, or how, or anything else, I don’t know.”
“I get into enough trouble with the things I think I know something about. Why in the world should I take a long or short position in something I don’t know about?”
Source: computing news