Bitcoin right now is not really anonymous. While Bitcoin addresses aren’t necessarily linked to real-world identities, they can be. Monitoring the unencrypted peer-to-peer network, analysis of the public blockchain, and Know Your Customer (KYC) policy or Anti-Money Laundering (AML) regulation can reveal a lot about who’s using Bitcoin, and for what.
Mr. Tharman Shanmugaratnam, Singapore’s Deputy Prime Minister, Coordinating Minister for Economic and Social Policies, and Chairman of Singapore’s financial watchdog, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), has responded to a question pertaining to MAS’s assessments and regulatory intentions regarding cryptocurrencies and initial coin offerings (ICOs). Mr. Shanmugaratnam replied by stating that the Singaporean regulator did not recognize bitcoin as legal tender, and that the MAS will likely seek to regulate companies providing bitcoin payment services, rather than the cryptocurrency itself.