It may seem trivial in some cases, but digital anonymity is no joking matter to American whistleblower and privacy advocate Edward Snowden.
“We need someone to be able to post something truly idiotic on the internet and not have it haunt them for the rest of their lives,” he said through a webcam to a crowd of roughly 1,000 at the Web3 Summit in Berlin.
“To be able to engage in private trade is one of the basic human freedoms,” Snowden said during his Tuesday keynote. “On the internet today you can’t do that without incredible technological familiarity.”
While statements pushing for greater data privacy through encryption were by no means new for the former Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) contractor, Snowden’s words resonated deeply with the audience, which was comprised mostly of blockchain developers.
And, if the products being demoed in Berlin were any indication, those developers had already heeded the call.
Echoing the need for enhanced privacy measures atop existing blockchains, Harry Halpin, CEO of privacy startup Nym Technologies, said during his Web3 address:
“We want you [the user] to think very seriously about privacy. [Nym] tries to make it technically impossible, and not just legally difficult, to break privacy.”
Also championing the cause of data privacy was cryptocurrency pioneer David Chaum, who unveiled a new cryptocurrency called Praxxis on Tuesday to support his private messaging platform, Elixxir.
“The world … needs the Elixxir communication technology,” Chaum said in a statement released Tuesday. “It is the only known practical way to shred the metadata that is inevitably created as we live our digital lives.”
The origins of Web3
Privacy is core part of the Web3 movement,