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Anonymous Payments on the Web

No one can deny the importance of privacy has become quite vital these days and this relates to almost all aspects of life, inter alia, money and payments. The reasons why most of us seek to protect payment information against tracking are manifold: scamming, secrecy in a delicate situation, lack of confidence on the web or even anonymous gifts. The ever-growing demand for anonymity has given rise to numerous tools trying to meet the high social demand for privacy.

Speaking of these anonymization solutions, we may discriminate 4 general groups:

  1. Cryptocurrencies
  2. Disposable cards - intermediary services
  3. Prepaid plastic bank cards
  4. Ezzocard virtual prepaid bank cards

We will have a closer look at their main distinguishing features in this article, and compare them with Ezzocard virtual prepaid cards we offer (a comparative table and a summary are available for a quick reference in conclusion).

It should be noted at the outset that the anonymity of the methods we are about to evaluate is grounded on the fact that necessary steps to protect online privacy, such as anonymous surfing (VPN, Tor, etc.), anonymous email, disabled cookies and browser history (incognito mode), have been taken in advance.

1. Cryptocurrencies

Cryptocurrencies are among the most well-known methods of anonymous payments nowadays. Most of them are pseudonymous (as opposed to anonymous). Actually, the nature of the blockchain, Bitcoin (most acclaimed cryptocurrency) and the majority of others implies the complete transparency of transactions and hence, your anonymity can be ensured only if you are able to conceal the association of your crypto-wallet with your identity, i.e. not to leave any information on the Internet that could be related to your cryptocurrency address. This seems to be quite achievable considering the amount of how-to articles accessible on-line. Sometimes it is even better to use relatively new cryptocurrencies (Dash, Zcash, Monero) since their creators focus on their complete anonymity and give priority to transactions' enhanced security, though these services are less common and do not provide as many options as, for example, Bitcoin.

Serious restrictions on the use for payments remain the weak point of cryptoassets given that most online stores and services do not accept them. So, if you need a wider range of anonymous paying opportunities, you should address other methods. It is worth noting at the same time that cryptocurrencies' absolute advantage is their full independence from geographical location making it possible to purchase them and pay worldwide.

You should also keep in mind that all cryptocurrencies have a high variability of exchange rate (value volatility) which means the cost of your cryptoassets can vary quickly and significantly.

CRYPTOCURRENCIES
Advantages Drawbacks
  • Anonymity at purchase and at payment

  • No geographical restrictions

  • Little scope for use – most online store and services do not accept cryptocurrencies

  • High value volatility

2. Disposable Cards – Intermediary Services

Today we encounter quite a number of services allowing to mask the users' and their cards data and working on the principle of digital wallets (e.g. entropay.com, privacy.com etc.). The tools using these services are commonly called “masked cards” or “disposable virtual cards”. The idea is that such a payment service generates a one-time use credit card number which can be applied only for one particular payment transaction. The utilization of fictitious names is possible as a rule, so a cardholder's true name and a real card data remain secret and inaccessible to a payee what prevents potential larceny. Yet, we can hardly speak of complete anonymity since these payment services initially get all your personal information at registration and if necessary, payments can be easily associated with the person who pays.

Another apparent shortcoming is the geographical limitation of use given the fact that the majority of such services operate in the US, Canada and Western Europe and are available only to their residents.

The field of application of the intermediary services and disposable debit cards appears nonetheless to be much wider than that of cryptocurrencies, although there are still some restrictions. In particular, a number of platforms, including even large ones such as Google and Facebook, do not accept single use virtual cards and there is no possibility to verify accounts on an assumed name and make recurrent payments in PayPal and other similar systems using this kind of one-time bankcards.

INTERMEDIARY SERVICES
Advantages Drawbacks
  • Your personal data is hidden from payees and protected from scammers

  • The field of application is wider comparing to cryptocurrencies

  • Possibility of reload

  • Limited anonymity - the service receives your personal data

  • Limitations in application

  • Limited availability - the service is not available in many countries

3. Prepaid plastic bank cards

Prepaid plastic bank cards are considered as one of the best ways to make anonymous online payments. On the one hand, they offer a wide field of application, they are welcome in the vast majority of web stores and services and accepted for account verification. On the other hand, buying a prepaid plastic card in an offline store for cash gives you almost absolute anonymity – they can be registered in any name (including nicknames and aliases) so that the owner's real personal information cannot be tracked.

A good example of such cards is Playsafecards which are pretty popular and commonly sold in conventional shops in Europe and North America and provide a typical illustration of a prepaid card with all its benefits and aspects.

Nonetheless, this kind of products have a number of shortcomings and limitations – they cannot be purchased on-line and they are not available in most countries, e.g., unlike the residents of the US or Canada who have access to prepaid plastic bankcards in ordinary supermarkets, people in India, Morocco, Bangladesh and most other countries have no opportunity to buy them and pay worldwide. Another serious drawbacks include the impossibility of recurring payments and a limited face value product range which usually starts from $20 and does not exceed $200. For example, the nominal value limits of the aforesaid Playsafecards are $100 or €100, depending on the country.

PREPAID PLASTIC BANK CARDS
Advantages Drawbacks
  • Complete anonymity of both purchase and use - your personal data is untraceable

  • Wide scope of application, including verification of various accounts

  • Very limited availability - cannot be purchased on-line, a small number of countries where such cards are sold

  • Limited face value range

  • No recurrent payment option

  • Reload is not available

4. Ezzocard virtual prepaid cards

Ezzocard virtual prepaid cards are likely to be the best choice for those who seek full anonymity, convenience of use and fast online accessibility and there are enough reasons.

Firstly, you can purchase Ezzocard card products using anonymous payment methods including cryptocurrencies. In such a case, neither verification nor ID are required, so your real data are protected against tracking and absolute anonymity of purchase is guaranteed.

Secondly, cards can be registered in an assumed name, thus making it possible to carry out payments and verify accounts (including PayPal verification) applying an alias or a nickname.

Thirdly, Ezzocard virtual bankcards provide extensive opportunities for instant online payments worldwide and operate wherever prepaid Visa or Mastercard cards are accepted.

Fourthly, Ezzocard VCCs are available to any customer all over the world and their face value range is really huge, varying from $5 to $900, what makes them even more attractive.

Fifthly, Ezzocard means rapidity and convenience for clients – purchasing is practically immediate and cards are delivered right away upon receipt of payment.

No reload options is, probably, the only shortcoming of Ezzocard virtual bankcards.

EZZOCARD VIRTUAL PREPAID CARDS
Advantages Drawbacks
  • Complete anonymity of both purchase and use - your personal data is untraceable

  • Wide scope of application, including verification of various accounts

  • Availability - cards can be easily bought on-line from anywhere in the world

  • Possibility to make recurring payments

  • Reload is not available

Comparative Table and Summary

Payment method Crypto Intermediary Services Prepaid Plastic Cards Ezzocard Virtual Prepaid Cards

Anonymity of use

table-point-good table-point-good table-point-good table-point-good

Anonymity of purchase

table-point-good table-point-bad table-point-good table-point-good

Availability for purchase

table-point-good table-point-average table-point-bad table-point-good

Range of application

(where accepted)
table-point-bad table-point-average table-point-good table-point-good

Volatility of value

table-point-bad table-point-good table-point-good table-point-good

Possibility of reloading

table-point-good table-point-good table-point-bad table-point-bad

Looking at the set of such qualities as anonymity, availability and range of application, Ezzocard virtual payment cards seems by far the best solution. However, if you do want to make a right choice, you should closely consider your objectives and circumstances. For those who live in the US or Canada and need to be anonymous only on terms of preventing identity theft, disposable virtual cards could perhaps remain the best option. If the merchants you deal with accept cryptocurrencies, then maybe paying with cryptoassets is more lucrative for you.

But if you look online for a completely anonymous, reliable and multi-purpose tool to pay on the web, then Ezzocard cards is the best choice today.

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