CASHLESS SOCIETY? THINK AGAIN…February 9, 2011
Here's something to think about:
Most people think that a move to a cashless society, with all transactions being done via computers and even - perish the thought - little microchips embedded in the body, is a wonderful idea.
Don't get me wrong. I'm just as fond of using my card to purchase things online as the next guy, but I'm still old fashioned enough to conduct some transactions still by a written cheque, snail mail, and even cash. Imagine hackers hacking into SWIFT, the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Transfer's computers in Brussels. Nothing is impossible. A cashless society would be a nightmarish opportunity for the sorts of "assymmetrical warfare" types of operations of which terrorism is only the tip of the iceberg. Without multiple redundant systems of media of exchange, including good old fashioned cash, the opportunities for sophisticated people to do enormous damage to the world's major economies is immense. Computer systems require such redundancies by the nature of the case, but we must understand, that economies need them too, for in the computer age, they are dangerously exposed to such activity. Economies need redundant layers of media of exchange. A totally cashless society, in my opinion, is a splendidly and magnificently bad idea.