Say I buy bitcoins from someone with cash (no bank, name, trace, etc.) and have them send it to a paper wallet/offline address. Yeah, there's a "trace" but to WHAT/WHO? It's bought with cash, etc.

With this offline address I receive it and send it to another person from it (not using any personally-identifiable Wi-Fi, etc.) like from, say, a coffee shop or other public Wi-Fi from the paper wallet that has no personal information linking to me. This is not bought in a traditional sense.

Coins with bought with cash -- seller doesn't know who I am or received any ID. I used no banks, personal info, home Wi-Fi... If one can't trace it to you and prove you did it, isn't it anonymous?

If one were to do all of this, wouldn't this make it close to impossible to both track and prove without a doubt that said person could be held "liable" for having used this if they have no way to prove they bought it, any personal info, etc.? You can even add a VPN, Tor, etc. for the icing.....

I realize one can track some steps, but the real kicker is; tracked to whom? There's no solid info... No public Wi-Fi businesses/etc. Can have every measure in effect to connect your IP to you 100%.

  • This type of anonymity that you describe was one of the design objectives of bitcoin. See section 10 of the original bitcoin whitepaper by 'Satoshi Nakamoto', where it reads, 'The public can see that someone is sending an amount to someone else, but without information linking the transaction to anyone'.
    – mti2935
    Jul 13, 2022 at 21:09

1 Answer 1


The transaction is pseudonymous not anonymous. That means how the money flowed is a matter of public record, and the pseudonyms could be unmasked at any time in the future. If the guy you buy the coins from doesn't care about concealing his identity, or his identity is discovered by some other means, finding out where he was at the time of the transaction reveals where you were.

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