Implications of a Cashless Society

The Risks of Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC): 

Privacy, Control, and the Dangers of Overreach 

11th July 2023, Sarah Wood


In an era of technological advancements, the possibility of a cashless society looms on the horizon. Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) initiatives have gained traction, promising efficiency, and convenience. However, amidst the allure of digital transactions, a darker side emerges — one that raises concerns about privacy, individual control, and the potential for societal overreach. In this article, we will explore two significant events that shed light on these implications, emphasising the risks associated with a cashless future.

First, we delve into the recent incident surrounding the “cancelling” of politician Nigel Farage’s bank accounts. The indiscriminate use of the “Politically Exposed Person” (PEP) label by banks sparked justified concerns regarding freedom of speech, financial autonomy, and the abuse of power. Farage’s plight exposes the vulnerability of individuals whose opinions do not align with certain institutions’ “values.” The actions taken to render him unable to function within the country by denying access to basic financial services have sent shockwaves through society.

Turning our attention to the COVID-19 pandemic, we reminded of the controversial incident that unfolded at the Canadian-American border. Truck drivers, responsible for transporting essential goods, were compelled to receive mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations to continue their work. Peacefully protesting against this violation of their bodily autonomy, they found themselves facing unforeseen consequences. Prime Minister Trudeau invoked emergency powers, freezing the bank accounts of these truckers under the guise of national security. This incident showcases the potential overreach of government authority and raises red flags about the control wielded in a cashless society.

Analysing these cautionary tales, we must confront the risks and implications of a cashless future and the introduction of a Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC). What becomes evident is the absence of intermediary steps between alleged acts of sedition and the punitive actions taken by the government. With the potential launch of a CBDC, these concerning actions could escalate insidiously, leaving no buffer between accusations and severe consequences. The spectre of imposing expiry dates on CBDC funds, freezing accounts, presuming guilt by default, and manipulating access to benefits and goods becomes increasingly real.

Moreover, we delve into emerging discussions, such as those by the World Economic Forum, that hint at the control exerted over people’s purchasing choices. The denial of specific goods, like meat due to environmental concerns, is just one example of the potential restrictions that could be imposed under the guise of social responsibility. The implications for personal freedoms and the right to make autonomous decisions cannot be ignored.

In this article, we address these pressing issues, exploring the risks and consequences of a cashless society and the implementation of a Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC). Our aim is to shed light on the potential threats to privacy, individual control, and the delicate balance between societal welfare and governmental overreach. Through a creative and authoritative exploration, backed by relevant data sources, we hope to engage and inform voters about the implications of this paradigm shift.

Stay tuned as we embark on this crucial journey, navigating the intricate web of a cashless society and its potential impact on our lives.

Privacy Concerns in a Cashless Society

The incidents involving Nigel Farage and the protesting truck drivers highlight one of the most pressing concerns in a cashless society: privacy. As financial transactions become entirely digital, the potential for surveillance and data tracking looms large. While proponents argue that a CBDC can offer improved transaction security, the implications for personal privacy cannot be overlooked.

In Farage’s case, the indiscriminate labelling of individuals as “Politically Exposed Persons” (PEPs) raises questions about how this classification is determined and the extent to which it can be used as a means of control. The ability of banks to arbitrarily freeze accounts based on such classifications threatens the financial autonomy and personal freedom of individuals who hold opinions that challenge the status quo.

Furthermore, the truck drivers’ experience at the Canadian-American border underscores the invasive nature of a cashless system. The mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations became a gateway for monitoring and controlling individuals’ movements and activities. By freezing their bank accounts, the government effectively restricted their access to funds and crippled their ability to sustain themselves and their families.

In a cashless society, every transaction becomes a piece of data, allowing authorities to monitor individuals’ financial activities with unprecedented granularity. While proponents argue that increased transparency can help combat illicit activities, the potential for abuse and infringements on privacy rights should ring alarm bells in the 21st century.

Government Overreach and Lack of Intermediary Steps

A particularly alarming aspect of the incidents discussed is the absence of intermediary steps between alleged acts of sedition or non-compliance and the punitive actions taken by the government. The speed and severity with which actions were enforced raise concerns about due process, presumption of innocence, and the erosion of fundamental rights.

With the potential introduction of a CBDC, the risks of governmental overreach and control intensify. Discussions from institutions like the World Economic Forum point to measures that could further curtail personal freedoms. These measures include placing expiry dates on CBDC funds, effectively seizing individuals’ assets if they are not spent within a predetermined time frame. Additionally, freezing accounts based on suspicion rather than concrete evidence shifts the burden of proof and undermines the principle of “innocent until proven guilty.”

Moreover, the potential for governments to control access to benefits and goods is cause for significant concern. If a government has direct control over digital currency, it can dictate what goods can be purchased and what cannot. This creates a scenario where personal choices are heavily influenced and, in extreme cases, restricted based on the government’s perception of social responsibility. The denial of certain goods, such as meat due to environmental concerns, becomes a real possibility, infringing on individual autonomy and personal dietary choices.

Would Balances, Laws and Safeguards be Enough?

As we navigate the landscape of a cashless society and the potential introduction of Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs), we must question whether balances and safeguards alone would be sufficient to protect humanity from the potential overreach and control. The rise of artificial intelligence (AI) in combination with CBDCs poses unique challenges that require careful consideration.

The progress of AI technology is exponential, with advancements being made at an astonishing pace. When coupled with the comprehensive data available in a cashless society, AI systems can quickly analyse vast amounts of information, enabling governments and institutions to exert even greater influence and control over individuals’ lives via a CBDC. The risk arises when the speed of technological progress outstrips the ability of checks, measures, laws, and safeguards to keep up.

While regulations and safeguards may be put in place, it is essential to recognise that the very technology we rely on to safeguard our freedoms can also be used to manipulate and subvert them. The thirst for power and control, coupled with the vast capabilities of AI, could potentially render existing safeguards inadequate. We must remain vigilant and continually assess the balance between technological advancement and individual rights.

Furthermore, the removal of cash from a society fundamentally alters power dynamics. In a cashless system, control over financial transactions and access to funds lies solely in the hands of centralised entities. Once this power is consolidated, the burden shifts to the individual to protect themselves from potential abuses. However, the reality is that not everyone possesses the means, education, funding, time, or even the will to navigate and rectify issues arising from restrictions imposed by a CBDC. This creates an inherently imbalanced power dynamic, leaving individuals vulnerable and disempowered.

In such a scenario, people may find themselves compelled to submit and surrender to the overwhelming might of the system. The government assumes the role of an all-powerful entity, playing the role of a god while the people are left powerless to resist. The loss of individual agency and the inability to challenge or question the actions of the governing authorities threatens the very essence of a democratic society.

Therefore, it is crucial to carefully evaluate the implications of a cashless society and the introduction of CBDCs. We must go beyond mere balances and safeguards, recognising the potential for technology and centralised control to undermine individual freedoms and create an unassailable power structure. It is the responsibility of society to actively engage in discussions, demand transparency, and insist that we stop before progressing any further. 


As the world edges closer to a cashless society and the potential introduction of Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs), it is vital to consider the broader implications for privacy, individual control, and the dangers of overreach. The incidents involving Nigel Farage and the protesting truck drivers serve as cautionary tales, illustrating the risks that can arise even in the presence of cash.

By examining these incidents, we begin to understand the potential ramifications of a society heavily reliant on digital currencies.

This is most certainly a topic eligible for referendum and informed prior consent from the British electorate is absolutely essential.

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