Getting through customs and past security can be a stressful situation for many of us, but have you considered how wearing Bitcoin clothing, or having Bitcoin merchandise on display might make you stand out as suspect to security forces?
It’s wrong, but according to an article in Bitcoin.com, this is what has been happening. Bitcoin fanatics are being targeted by security personnel, no doubt as a result of the stigma that links cryptocurrency and the dark web. Are people who wear Bitcoin t shirts trying to smuggle boat loads of drugs past security forces? Probably not, but it seems, that’s what they think.
According to Bitcoin.com:
“Ask anyone in the space, and they’ll recall instances where they’ve been pulled aside, stared at, and not always in a bad way. Wearing cool shirts, having stickers on your stuff, is a great way to evangelize. People want to know about cryptocurrency, and so these little advertisements become conversation starters.”
Although, displaying your affiliation to the community can bring with it a dark downside. Davi Barker of Bitcoin Not Bombs and a Bitcoin fanatic who has reported some of their experiences whilst trying to pass through customs, according to Bitcoin.com:
“After a very thorough pat down inspection and all his belongings rifled through, he was approached again but this time away from the TSA proper, and just before boarding his flight. Official looking people cornered him, and someone in an orange shirt began asking where he was headed and why. After giving these airport people vague answers, one of them suddenly asks, “‘What about Bitcoin?’ I was flabbergasted. This was above and beyond any scrutiny I had ever received from the TSA, and a little frightening that they were looking for Bitcoin. I said I didn’t understand the question. He continued, ‘We saw Bitcoin in your bag and need to check.’ I was incredulous, and asked, ‘Do you have a superior officer because I don’t think you know what you’re talking about.’ The blue shirt replied by repeating that they were ‘managers,’ but if I didn’t answer his questions he could call law enforcement and have me taken into custody.”
See the full article for yourself, here.
THEY SAW A BITCOIN!?
It’s madness isn’t it. Of course, security forces do categorise people based on various, wrong stereotypes but I don’t think anyone from the crypto community expected that having an affiliation to Bitcoin would also bring them to the attention of security forces, when trying to complete already stressful tasks such as going through customs at an airport.
Let us know what you think about this one in the comments!