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MGT Capital Investments, a New York-based firm, is renaming itself to “John McAfee Global Technologies, Inc.,” in honor of its incoming CEO and Chairman, the recent Libertarian presidential contender and consumer computer security pioneer, John McAfee.
At the same time, the investment company is bringing on at least two of the most recognized names in the Bitcoin world, Erik Voorhees and Roger Ver. Ver will be serving as Advisory Board Chairman and Voorhees will act in an advisory role.
The location of the company is important, as New York State is home to the infamous BitLicense, which pushed away several Bitcoin companies. Relevant to this case, ShapeShift.io, Erik Voorhees’ cryptocurrency exchange, was among these companies who fled the state. Also, Roger Ver has often had problems entering the United States as a result of renouncing his citizenship years ago. This indicates that the advisory roles these gentlemen will be taking on will not require much on-site presence, and in the age of high-quality video conferencing technology, this should not come as a surprise.
McAfee himself seems to have had a great deal to do with the appointments, saying of Voorhees:
I am extremely pleased with this addition to our growing advisory team. Eric is one of the most prolific innovators in the field of cryptocurrency. In addition to his outstanding business experience within the field, he is renowned as a technical innovator. Erik will be a great asset to MGT as we move forward.
Libertarians and technologists have an inherent interest in technologies like Bitcoin, not only because they tend to increase in value over time but because they represent a new level of technology improving society.
If nothing else, the advent of Bitcoin has given people all over the world greater control over their money as well as a lower-cost alternative for remittance. But it would be unfair to the invention to leave its benefits there: the block chain is widely heralded as a genius innovation on digital ledgers: more secure, immutable, and decentralized. John McAfee is both a libertarian and a technologist, and thus his movement with the investment firm in the direction of cryptocurrency is a natural progression.
Howver, McAfee made his bones in security, and he retains concerns for cryptocurrency users. In the press release about Roger Ver’s appointment, he is quoted as saying:
Even the most experienced Bitcoin user, for example, risks financial loss if a clever hacker targets them. Key loggers and screen capture spyware – which can easily be planted on mobile device or laptops by simply visiting a website, among other simple means of infiltration – can override most security features of existing wallets.
If these types of cyber threats are not remedied, the world risks financial chaos as cryptocurrencies are widely adopted.
This statement implies that John McAfee Global Technologies, Inc. may be most interested in developing more secure ways to transact and hold bitcoins. There are no firm plans from the company at present, however. Several ventures are presently trying to make Bitcoin safer and easier for the end-user, and there will always be a market for more secure Bitcoin wallet implementations. Securing coins on exchanges is another area where big money pouring in could bring good returns for a company that was capable and innovative in that space.
McAfee has gone on the record as being very supportive of Bitcoin, and his presidential nomination campaign was actively accepting bitcoins. He does not necessarily believe that Bitcoin will be the one that gains the same level of adoption as a given fiat currency or remittance technology, as he says in the following video:
Whether or not the Libertarian party or someone else abolishes the [Federal Reserve], it’s a moot point. Because cryptocurrency is coming. I promise you. It may or may not be Bitcoin. It may be something else. […] It is like the Pandora’s box that has been opened.
Image from YouTube/CalvinAyre.