Will Congress Keep The Internet Tax Free?

Chances are, you might be paying Verizon to read this. Or Comcast. Or some other internet provider. But you’re not paying Uncle Sam. And you’re probably not paying your state or municipality. By law, federal, state and local governments may not tax internet access. The Internet Tax Freedom Act (downloads as a pdf), is part of Public Law 105-277, signed into law by President Clinton on October 21, 1998. The final piece of legislation, as published, is 920 pages long and is technically called the Omnibus Consolidated and Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Act, 1999. It hits a number of issues (agriculture, …

The End Of The (Silk) Road For Bitcoin Millionaire As IRS, Fed Agencies Make Arrests

We used to assume that crime happened in predictable places: dark alleys and dicey street corners. In reality, some of the biggest crimes in the world are occurring in home offices and in family basements: some of the most sophisticated and damaging financial crimes just need an internet connection. A recent study by the Center for Strategic and International Studies and McAfee (a subsidiary of Intel) put the cost of cyberespionage and cybercrime in the U.S. at $100 billion each year. That represents about 1% of the country’s gross domestic product. It’s not just hackers and identity thieves riding the …

Will Overstock Force IRS To Make Up Its Mind About Bitcoin?

Overstock raised eyebrows earlier this month when the retailer announced it would accept Bitcoin as payment. While Bitcoin has slowly been making inroads into the U.S. economy, Overstock is by far the largest, most mainstream company to tout the currency as a legitimate means of payment. And it definitely paid off, with Patrick M. Byrne, the company’s CEO, tweeting about it. Byrne launched Overstock.com in 1999. The company went public a few years later, in 2002, and now reports over a billion dollars in annual sales. It’s no Amazon.com – yet – but Byrne thinks that the decision to accept …