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Bitcoin Training for Foreign Embassy Officers, Says John Kerry

Last Updated March 4, 2021 4:51 PM
Samburaj Das
Last Updated March 4, 2021 4:51 PM


While fleeting in his comments, the U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has hinted that the government plans to train officers in embassies around the world about bitcoin.

Bitcoin may soon be a part of the curriculum imparted on foreign service officers stationed at embassies around the world, according to U.S. Secretary Kerry.

The official was talking during a recent appearance at a Silicon Valley gathering during the Virtuous Circle Conference. The topics of the conference were centered around subjects of cybersecurity and the wave of digitization sweeping across various facets of everyday life.

The moderator of the event sought to explore the U.S. government’s technology directive after the former Democratic presidential candidate revealed that there is currently a digital officer, in U.S. embassies. “We’ve got 139 digital officers now in embassies around the world,” Kerry said.

To this, the moderator further questioned if foreign officers at embassies are – in the current era – trained beyond the staple economics and international affairs.

The moderator asked:

Do you think we are now moving into an era where a foreign officer needs to be able to speak with fluency about Bitcoin and dark web the same way they do talk about international law today?

Kerry replied in the affirmative, which then had the moderator press on, questioning if the State Department was collectively pushing for training modules that includes bitcoin awareness.

He replied:

Yes. That’s the curriculum we’ve put together. I mean, I haven’t asked – there’s a lot of uncertainty with Bitcoin or whatever…

The official transcript  from the State departments’ website reveals laughter following Kerry’s mention of bitcoin. Whether snide or the simple incredulity from a gathering of software and technology professionals hearing the mention of bitcoin from one of the highest powers in U.S. elected office, the context for the laughter is unknown.

Washington DC, USA

What is happening, however, is that Washington -if not embassy officers yet – is gaining awareness of bitcoin, cryptocurrencies and blockchain technologies. Late last month, Washington D.C.-based non-profit and advocacy group Coin Center helped establish the Congressional Blockchain Caucus. The member organization is a bipartisan effort that will focus on the “advancement of sound public policy toward cryptocurrencies and other blockchain-based technologies,” as reported on earlier.

Just over a month from now, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission will be hosting a public Fintech forum where blockchain technology will be very much among the topics of discussion.

Images from Shutterstock and Wikimedia .