Despite the check and balances implemented by financial regulators, many loopholes still allow you to send money anonymously. Naturally, living in this year and date, we discard the manual options and consider digital.
While most techniques are generally safe, you should be aware that there are various levels of anonymity. Because of that, I’ll show you how to send money anonymously by using some form of cryptocurrency – plus a Virtual Private Network (VPN).
1. Register for a VPN
Before doing anything, the first step to take is to sign up for a VPN service. These allow you to connect to secure servers that help protect your data and mask identifying information. VPNs aren’t expensive, often costing just a few dollars a month.
VPN for Privacy Protection
If you care a lot about your privacy online, VPN is a good idea. Aside from masking your identity and keeping you safer online, VPNs also help you access geo-blocked content.
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- Panama-based, no data retention
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- Best-in-class encryption
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Also, see our recommended VPN providers for different use cases here.
2. Download and Install the VPN App
Once you’ve signed up for your account, download the VPN app for the device you’ll be using. Surfshark supports multiple platforms, including PC, Mac, and various smart devices like your mobile phone. Run the installation app and follow the on-screen instruction to get it on your device.
3. Connect to a VPN Server
Launch the VPN application and sign in using the credential you provide during the registration for the service. Scroll down the list of available server locations and select the one to connect. In general, the closer a server is to your location, the better the performance.
4. Sign up for a Crypto Wallet
Now that your connection is secure and masked, it’s time to sign up for a crypto wallet. These are digital wallets explicitly designed to hold cryptocurrency. Many brands are available, but there are two major distinguishing factors to note.
The first is that not all wallets support the same cryptocurrencies. There are thousands of cryptocurrencies available, so make sure the wallet you choose will support your preferred crypto. Popular options include Bitcoin, Etherum, and Litecoin.
Aside from that, not all wallets are exchange-integrated. Exchanges are where you’ll need to trade fiat currency (such as US dollars) into the various crypto. For convenience, you might like to find a wallet that supports native crypto exchange.
Some examples of these include Luno, Coinomi, and Freewallet. Most crypto wallets are free to use, but you should familiarise yourself with associated fees related to crypto exchanges and transfers.
If you choose a crypto wallet that doesn’t include exchange services, you’ll need to sign up for a separate account on a crypto exchange.
5. Making a Crypto Purchase
Once you have your wallet, it’s time to make a purchase. While crypto is exceptionally safe to transfer, you should note that prices are pretty volatile. To avoid a potential loss, try to make your purchase and send the crypto out as soon as possible.
The typical process for purchasing crypto is by selecting the crypto you want. The Exchange will then quote a price based on current rates. To complete the purchase, you’ll need a payment method.
Payment methods accepted will vary by the Exchange, but credit cards are generally accepted.
6. Send the Crypto
Sending crypto is anonymous since all you need is a payment link from the receiver. You don’t need to provide any of your details like name, address, and the like. This lack of required information is how you send money anonymously.
Why the VPN is Needed
Digital life is convenient, but every connection we make can reveal lots of information. For example, by loading a website, the website will see where we’re connecting from, what device we use, the operating system and browser, and lots more.
VPNs act as a middleman of sorts. When you connect to a VPN server, any connection request you make goes through that server. As such, the websites we connect to will only see the VPN server details – not ours.
In addition, VPNs encrypt all data, making it useless even if the information we’re sending gets somehow intercepted midway.
Other ways to Send Money Anonymously
While I favor the use of cryptocurrency due to high privacy levels and security, other options exist. Some alternative methods to send money anonymously include;
- Disposable prepaid cards
- Gift cards
- Cash via a service like MoneyGram
Be extremely cautious when using non-bank money transfer services like MoneyGram. Many of them are now highly regulated and require lots of verification and personal information. Plus, most of those will also provide recipients with your information.
Pay for Your VPN in Bitcoin
Since we’re on the topic of anonymous payments, you’ll be glad to know that you can pay for a VPN in Bitcoin. That means nothing identifiable like credit cards or bank transfers. While it might seem that all VPNs brands should offer this, it isn’t universal.
What is Bitcoin?
Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency created by Satoshi Nakamoto in 2009. That makes it one of the earliest existing cryptocurrencies. To date, Bitcoin remains extremely popular, with a total market capitalization of over $800 billion.
5 VPN You Can Pay for in Bitcoin
Because VPNs are privacy and security-focused services, it makes sense that they would accept Bitcoin as payment. Strangely enough, not all do. If you’d like to keep things as private as possible online, here are 5 VPN brands that will allow you to pay in Bitcoin:
- NordVPN – Accepts Bitcoin for subscriptions via BitPay
- Surfshark – CoinGate powers Bitcoin payments here
- ExpressVPN – Supports multiple Bitcoin wallet payments
- CyberGhost – You can pay in Bitcoin and other crypto
- Private Internet Access – Accepts Bitcoin
Some of them will accept other crypto as well as Bitcoin. If you’d rather pay in ETH or something else, it’s possible, just check their payment pages.
Sending money anonymously involves a few additional steps and perhaps some technology with which we may not be accustomed. However, these technologies, such as the VPN and crypto wallet, are pretty simple to understand.
Remember, the key to a successful transaction isn’t just anonymity. Also vital is the security aspect of the process involved. And there are few more secure than crypto.