‘Stockpile coins and banknotes’: Sweden tells its citizens to squirrel away hard cash under their beds in case of a cyber attack
Cashless payments are all the rage but people in Sweden have been told to squirrel away notes and coins in case of a cyber attack on the nation’s banks.
Digital payments offer convenience for both buyers and sellers alike and the Scandinavian nation has been an eager adopter of the technology.
Now, government experts are concerned that people could be left without any money should its computer networks become victim to an attack.
Sweden’s Civil Contingencies Agency has issued guidance to every household telling residents to stockpile ‘cash in small denominations’ for use in emergencies.
The warning will ring alarm bells around the world as developed nations increasingly make the move to a cashless society.
Emergencies envisioned by the Swedish government range from power cuts and other accident interruptions to computer networks, through to terrorism and cyber-warfare.
The government recommends that each citizen keep cash under their bed, according to a report in the Times.
Natalie Ceeney, who chairs an independent review into access to cash, told a conference last week: ‘If we don’t take action now in this country, we’re only a couple of years away from Sweden.
‘Sweden’s big message to us is, “Plan now before you get into a mess.” Sweden hit its crisis when its equivalent of the NHS declared it was going cashless.’
Sweden became the first European country to issue modern banknotes, in 1661 – ahead of the Bank of England, which followed in 1694.
Government figures suggest that 15 per cent of the nation’s citizen would find life difficult if they could not access and spend their money immediately.
Riksbank, the country’s central bank, last week called for an inquiry into the risks posed by a future cashless society.
It suggested that Swedish politicians should create the world’s first state backed form of digital money.
Officials told parliament that hard cash was important ‘not just in times of crisis and war, but also in peacetime’.
Stefan Ingves, head of Riksbank, last year warned that a cashless society of the future put too much power into the hands of the company’s responsible for processing payments. – Daily Mail Online
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I’ve seen this happen. Debit machine down. Restaurant can’t process cards. Only people with cash, me and a couple of others, got served.
With Mastercard now considering banning cutting off payments to “far right groups”, is anyone certain that sometime in the future, they will not be ever be cut off from using plastic to pay for things? If you believe that it will never happen to you or your family, you are mistaken.
A cashless society is completely under the control of the people who own the payment system. Corporation or government. Two sides of the same coin.
I suggest that you always carry some cash.