IRS takes 5 years to respond to Bitcoin FOIA request

After a five year wait, a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request about Bitcoin has finally been fulfilled. Senior Investigative Reporter Jason Leopold made the request in 2014 of the U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS), to find out what their policies were on the cryptocurrency. They finally delivered on April 3, 2019.

Leopold tweeted about the documents he received. First, a data disc was delivered to his address, with a description of what files were on the disc. The files were password protected though, so Leopold had to wait until the next day when another letter with the password came.

Held inside was a 969-page document regarding the IRS’s Virtual Currency Guidance in its Internal Revenue Bulletin 2014-16. 182 pages that were originally in the document were held back though, as the IRS claimed those pages covered classified information.

Normally, FOIA guidelines state that an agency has 20 days to turn over documents once a request is made. In special cases, they can ask for more time, which the IRS would have had to do dozens of times to stay on the right side of the law in this case.

One of the more notable requests that has been flat-out refused was about the true identity of Bitcoin creator Satoshi Nakamoto. In May 2018, the National Security Agency (NSA) replied to a request stating that the answer is currently classified.

We don’t really need a FOIA request to get at that answer though. Dr. Craig Wright, the Chief Scientist of nChain, has proven beyond a doubt to the ownership of CoinGeek that he was the main architect of Bitcoin, and that it was he who conceived and used the pseudonymous name of Satoshi Nakamoto. He’s since gone on to be an integral part of the rebirth of Bitcoin as Bitcoin SV (BSV).

The NSA might eventually have their information declassified and confirm that for the rest of the world, but if they don’t, it’s not the end of the world. In the meantime, BSV is pursuing its mission of massive on chain scaling.

If that goal excites you, why not join other BSV enthusiasts at the CoinGeek Toronto conference this May. Registering is easy, and you can save money by paying with BSV through Coingate.

New to Bitcoin? Check out CoinGeek’s Bitcoin for Beginners section, the ultimate resource guide to learn more about Bitcoin—as originally envisioned by Satoshi Nakamoto—and blockchain.

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