Bitcoin has been a very hot topic lately, but it has also been subject to a bit of confusion and misunderstanding in regards to what it actually is and how it works. BitcoinNotBombs co-founder Davi Barker was subject to that confusion recently when TSA agents screened him for claiming to have spotted Bitcoin in his bag.
“I was flabbergasted. This was above and beyond any scrutiny I had ever received from the TSA, and a little frightening that they were looking for Bitcoin. I said I didn’t understand the question,” Barker said in a telling of the event.
Baker’s confusion should make sense to anyone who knows the first thing about Bitcoin. The obvious problem with this is that Bitcoin is a digital currency and has no physical form to accompany it.
According to Baker’s account, after he had already been through the security checkpoint, two people stopped him. They were TSA agents who claimed to have seen Bitcoin in his bag and said that they need to check it.
Baker was traveling with Bitcoin related merchandise, namely metal pins with Bitcoin labels on them. According to him, it is likely that this is what seemed to confuse the TSA agents. He was also wearing a Bitcons Not Bonbs hoodie at the time. The agents eventually allowed him to go to his flight.
Because the new form of currency is difficult to track and has been linked to suspicious activity, it is no wonder that federal organizations would be on alert for it. However, the TSA agents, at least in this particular scenario, were clearly a bit confused as to what Bitcoin actually is and why Barker was so frustrated with the situation.