The Disneyland Resort in Hong Kong recently reopened after being forced to close because of coronavirus restrictions; over the next few weeks, vending machines at this popular amusement park will feature a new and interesting method of payment: Ghost Coin, the cryptocurrency token developed by the eccentric and cantankerous John McAfee.
In mid-June, the business development team behind Ghost Coin hinted at a potential partnership with a major player in Asia, and the partner was revealed two weeks later. The Hong Kong associate in question is iVendPay, a company that operates vending machines located at more than 60 spots in the region, and it plans to expand its presence with innovative payment solutions. In the case of Ghost Coin, it is not the first digital currency to be added as a payment option in iVendPay's machines, but is the first privacy-minded token.
Ghost Coin is similar to Monero in the sense that its blockchain network features certain measures that grant anonymity as well as plausible deniability. Whereas Bitcoin keeps things pseudonymous and traceable, Ghost Coin uses obfuscation tactics for the purpose of providing privacy at very high levels. In other words, this is the kind of token that American law enforcement and intelligence agencies would not want to deal with.
As can be expected with just about every project that John McAfee has been involved with, Ghost Coin has provoked controversy. When the token was first announced with a white paper, readers found that many sections were simply copied and pasted from PIVX, the open source protocol that the Ghost Coin blockchain is based on; normally, this would not be a problem if McAfee had just explained that his token was going to be based on an open source system, but he tried to pass it off as his own and later threatened to file a defamation lawsuit against the core developers behind PIVX.
More infamously, McAfee was involved in a murder investigation when he lived in Belize a few years ago, and he fled the country to escape what he thought was going to be an unfair and corrupt prosecution.