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Buy bitcoin anonymously

13 min read

Decentralization and anonymity are among the two most important narratives of the crypto world, evolving primarily from skepticism towards banks and the financial system. Purchasing bitcoin without registration is what many investors seek. Is it still possible to buy bitcoin anonymously today? If so, how? What payment methods can be used for this? In our guide, we’ll show you what options you have available in 2024. We also provide a guide to anonymous BTC purchase, compare the best providers, and provide important security information about anonymous bitcoin purchases.

Best Places to buy Bitcoin anonymously

In this section, we summarize where you can buy Bitcoin anonymously. There are several apps and platforms to choose from, but of course, each has its pros and cons.

Bitcoin ATMs – Anonymous Bitcoin Purchase with Cash

A highly sought-after place for anonymous BTC purchase is the bitcoin ATM. The process is very simple, find the nearest bitcoin ATM and select how much cryptocurrency you want to buy. The items will be listed in your local currency. Then, you will be asked to insert cash into the ATM that covers the total purchase price.

Subsequently, a receipt will be printed, which will include a unique wallet address and private key. In most cases, you can scan the QR code using a mobile wallet. Some bitcoin ATMs allow you to scan the address of your wallet when completing the payment. However, it is important to keep in mind that not all bitcoin ATMs support anonymous cryptocurrency purchases.

Some providers require you to verify your phone number and provide a government-issued ID. In this case, your face will also be scanned to ensure it matches the ID you submitted. KYC requirements can vary depending on the provider. A major disadvantage of bitcoin ATMs is the fees, which are usually very high. Expect to pay 10–20% above the current spot price of BTC.

Additionally, it is important to mention that bitcoin ATMs are typically located in large cities, so for those residing in remote locations, this may not be a suitable option. Searching for the nearest bitcoin ATM can be simplified by visiting the CoinATMRadar website. After entering your location, you will get a list of the nearest bitcoin ATMs. Currently, there are more than 32,400 in over 70 countries. Once you click on your chosen bitcoin ATM, CoinATMRadar will list key statistics such as fees, ATM providers, and whether KYC verification will be required.

Fee for buying bitcoins It depends on the bitcoin ATM provider. The average fee is 16% according to CoinATMRadar .
Best feature You can buy BTC instantly for cash in your local currency, user friendly experience


  • You can buy BTC anonymously with physical cash
  • Tens of thousands of bitcoin ATMs are available worldwide
  • Some bitcoin ATMs only require a phone number
  • Usually support small amounts for purchase


  • Some bitcoin ATM providers have introduced KYC checks
  • Astronomical fees, often 10–20% higher than the spot price

Bisq – Decentralized Escrow Bitcoin Exchange

Bisq is another option to consider when looking to buy bitcoin without registration. Bisq brands itself as a decentralized Bitcoin exchange operating on a peer-to-peer basis. To utilize this platform, one needs to download software for Windows, Mac, or Linux operating systems. Bisq does not mandate account creation, allowing for completely anonymous trading.

The next step involves selecting your local currency and choosing your preferred payment methods. Options include local bank networks, electronic wallets, and Western Union. After specifying the amount of BTC you wish to purchase, Bisq will display a list of sellers who accept your chosen payment method. Should you opt to proceed with a transaction, the seller is required to deposit the bitcoins into Bisq’s escrow.

The cryptocurrencies are held in escrow until the transaction concludes. You are then instructed to transfer funds to the seller’s account. While this process may seem straightforward, Bisq has its drawbacks. Firstly, the platform’s support for anonymous fiat transactions raises legal concerns. Although Bisq does not directly handle fiat payments, serving instead as an intermediary, this aspect has led most peer-to-peer exchanges to implement KYC policies.

Moreover, Bisq often struggles to attract sufficient trading volume, with many users reporting challenges in finding sellers willing to transact significant amounts. Be prepared for sellers to charge substantially above the market rate. Bisq has also introduced trading fees, with buyers paying 1.15% of the transaction value. Additionally, there are reports on Reddit indicating that Bisq may be prone to brokerage scams, suggesting the importance of conducting thorough research before engaging.

Fee for buying bitcoins 1.15% of the purchase amount
Best feature A decentralized P2P network, available as desktop software, key decisions are made by the DAO


  • A decentralized platform
  • Software available for Windows, Mac, and Linux
  • Ability to filter sellers by preferred currency and payment method
  • Established escrow system for secure transactions
  • No ID requirements


  • Potential for intermediary scams and money laundering
  • Questions regarding legal operation
  • High trading fees
  • Unfavorable BTC exchange rates

Hodl Hodl – Anonymous P2P Exchange with Low Fees

Another contender is Hodl Hodl, a P2P exchange supporting BTC. With over seven years in the market and more than 100,000 registered users, it requires just an email address, nickname, and strong password for account creation. No further personal information is necessary, positioning it as a prime choice for registration-free bitcoin purchases.

Upon accessing the platform, users can search for buying options that meet their criteria, filtering by local currency and preferred payment methods, which include local bank transfers, SWIFT, Venmo, Neteller, and PayPal. The platform displays all relevant offers, including the seller’s price.

Proceeding with a transaction prompts the seller to move BTC into Hodl Hodl’s escrow. After fund transfer and seller payment confirmation, the bitcoins are released. However, some users have noted that many sellers on the platform implement their own KYC processes, potentially requiring government-issued ID for transaction completion.

A notable issue with Hodl Hodl is the often higher rates charged. Typically, prices significantly exceed the spot rate for cryptocurrencies, with the platform imposing a 0.3% fee on buyers, consistent with industry norms. Activity levels on the platform can be low, with our research finding just over 100 offers across all supported currencies and payment methods.

Fee for buying bitcoins 0.3% of the purchase amount
Best feature You can filter sellers who accept your preferred payment method, Transparent rates, User-friendly dashboard


  • Established P2P Bitcoin exchange
  • Only requires an email for registration
  • Supports various fiat currencies and payment methods
  • Direct transfer of Bitcoin to your private wallet upon payment completion


  • Limited platform activity with few sellers
  • No support in fraud cases
  • Sellers often charge rates well above Bitcoin’s spot price

LocalCoinSwap – P2P Exchange Without Mandatory KYC

If you’re still undecided on where to buy Bitcoin anonymously, consider LocalCoinSwap. This P2P exchange doesn’t enforce a mandatory KYC process. However, our research indicates that the majority of sellers on LocalCoinSwap are unlikely to transact with unverified users.

Finding a suitable seller often reveals highly unfavorable rates. Despite this, the platform is popular among many users due to its support for over 300 payment methods across various currencies.

Besides BTC, LocalCoinSwap accepts several leading altcoins, including ETH, USDC, and USDT. Notably, the platform waives trading fees for accepting existing offers but charges 1% for custom requests. LocalCoinSwap boasts a TrustPilot rating of 4.3/5, based on 159 reviews.

Fee for buying bitcoins No commissions for accepting an offer that has already been posted. 1% commission on custom offers.
Best feature You can avoid trading fees when you accept the seller’s offer, Supports multiple cryptocurrencies, Supports a wide range of payment methods


  • Established P2P exchange
  • Supports over 300 payment methods
  • No KYC requirements
  • Supports various cryptocurrencies like ETH and USDT
  • 24/7 customer support


  • Few sellers willing to deal with unverified users
  • 1% trading fee for placing your own request

Is Bitcoin Anonymous?

It’s crucial to understand that buying cryptocurrencies in general is not entirely anonymous. This is due to the underlying structure of blockchain technology, which makes transactions public and transparent. Every transaction that occurs on the blockchain is visible and traceable by anyone. This means that wallet addresses – even though not always directly linked to an individual – can theoretically be traced.

Selling bitcoins for fiat currencies without revealing your identity is nearly impossible. The only way to bypass KYC (Know Your Customer) is to use a P2P (Peer-to-Peer) exchange or a DEX (Decentralized Exchange), but this comes with security concerns. Most wallets are managed by centralized and regulated cryptocurrency exchanges that are required by regulations to request and collect personal information about their users.

Why Buy Bitcoin Anonymously

In this section, we will list several reasons why some people prefer to buy Bitcoin anonymously.


There are many people in the world who prefer transactions in complete privacy, including online transactions such as buying and selling bitcoin. The reason is straightforward; some people simply do not feel comfortable handing over personal information to third parties. For example, consider a transaction at your supermarket. If the supermarket asked for your name, home address, and government-issued ID after making a payment, you would likely be displeased. As for BTC, cryptocurrency exchanges have implemented KYC processes in the vast majority of cases. This requires providing a considerable amount of personal information, contact details, government-issued ID, and proof of address. In many cases, you must also provide a selfie.

Faster Purchase

KYC procedures can be time-consuming, as some trading platforms manually check the provided information, so you could be waiting from several hours to several days. The reason some people seek the option to buy cryptocurrencies without registration is that skipping the KYC process allows for much faster transactions.

Wider Availability

Another reason some people look to buy bitcoin anonymously is wider availability. According to the World Bank, more than 850 million people worldwide do not have an official government-issued ID. This means 850 million people who cannot buy bitcoins the traditional way.

Additionally, many people live in countries where cryptocurrencies are completely banned. According to Fortune, bitcoin is banned in nine jurisdictions including China, Algeria, Bangladesh, Morocco, Tunisia, Iraq, Oman, Egypt, and Qatar. This means that these people cannot use traditional exchanges to buy cryptocurrencies. Instead, they will need to find a way to make a purchase without registration.

No Third-Party Risk

The vast majority of cryptocurrency exchanges are centralized entities, so you have to trust a third party. There is always a risk that your personal information and government-issued ID could fall into the wrong hands. By buying BTC without registration, you don’t have to worry about data breaches or hacker attacks. However, when you buy bitcoins through a decentralized platform like Best Wallet, you always have full control over your holdings. These platforms do not have access to your private keys.

Ways to Buy Cryptocurrencies Without KYC Essentially, there are three ways to buy Bitcoin anonymously

Decentralized Exchanges

Using a decentralized exchange (DEX) is one of the safest but not the easiest ways to buy bitcoin anonymously. You don’t have to trust a third party for transactions, and the best decentralized exchanges operate without a single point of failure, as they run on regularly audited smart contracts. Moreover, they rarely require an account opening process. All transactions are conducted through a cryptocurrency wallet that you connect to the exchange, so you don’t have to provide personal information or KYC documents.

However, there are limitations. DEXs cannot accept fiat methods like credit cards or bank transfers. Some platforms have integrated with third-party processors, but these require KYC processes and charge relatively high fees. Therefore, if you want to buy BTC anonymously, you’ll need to fund your purchase with another cryptocurrency.

P2P Exchanges

P2P means Peer-to-Peer or person-to-person. Thus, you are trading directly with another person. This is risky in the sense that you’re still placing your trust in someone else. Another disadvantage is that sellers often have exorbitant prices from 10% upwards. Fortunately, these platforms use a form of social verification. After every transaction, the buyer can rate the bitcoin seller they traded with. In addition, there are other security measures, such as using a third-party escrow service, which you can both agree to only if the full terms of the transaction have been met. Besides exchanging or buying bitcoin, you can also build a network and possibly make valuable contacts with other cryptocurrency enthusiasts.

Bitcoin ATMs

One option is to purchase at a specialized ATM where you can exchange cash for bitcoins. Once you find a suitable ATM, it is very easy to buy bitcoins with cash. To receive bitcoins, you enter your BTC address into the machine and insert the corresponding amount of cash. The machine converts the inserted amount into BTC and transfers the corresponding bitcoins to the provided address.

Some bitcoin ATMs print a receipt with a QR code representing the private key to your purchased BTC. In this case, you must scan the QR code into a private wallet on your mobile phone. The downside of using bitcoin ATMs are the very high fees. The average fee for bitcoin ATMs is 16%, according to the website CoinATMRadar. This means you would need the BTC price to increase by 16% just to break even on your deposit.

Can You Buy Bitcoin Anonymously With a Bank Card?

Where can you buy bitcoins with a bank card? Bitcoins can be bought with a bank card on several different trading platforms, but this cannot be done without KYC. Many cryptocurrency brokers and exchanges accept debit card payments, although not all banks support these payments. Even if you find a P2P seller who accepts credit card payments, they will still have to ask you for some ID.

Using bank cards to buy bitcoins offers an easy way to acquire cryptocurrencies without the need for cash or lengthy account transfers to a trading platform. The purchase process may vary between platforms, but mainly all regulated trading platforms accept fiat currencies and therefore cards issued by major banks. Only buy bitcoins with debit and credit cards through trusted and well-known trading platforms.

Buy Bitcoin anonymously – Safety

In this section, we summarize a few tips on staying safe when you buy Bitcoin anonymously.

Thoroughly Vet the Bitcoin Provider

It’s always important to conduct due diligence on the provider from whom you plan to buy BTC. If you’re planning to use a P2P exchange, check its reputation on forums like Reddit or websites like TrustPilot. Here, you’ll get an overview of the experiences current and former customers have had with the platform. For DEXs, see what security features they offer and whether the smart contracts are audited by a reputable third party. You should also assess the legality of the trading platform. For example, if the platform directly accepts fiat payments and does not require a KYC process, it is most likely operating illegally.

Use a VPN

If your goal is complete anonymity, consider using a Virtual Private Network (VPN). This option is especially used by people residing in a country that does not allow trading in cryptocurrencies. A VPN prevents your real location from being displayed, making it appear as if you are located elsewhere.

Are scams possible on P2P bitcoin exchanges?

If the platform offers escrow services, it’s very difficult to be scammed as a buyer. This is because once the seller confirms receipt of payment, the BTC is released from escrow, which you can then immediately transfer to your private wallet. As a seller, you have a greater chance of being scammed on a P2P exchange. For example, there was a case where a P2P seller received a payment notification via SMS. After releasing the BTC from escrow, they later discovered that the payment was never received. However, the cryptocurrencies had already been transferred by that point.

Wallet Security

If you’re planning to purchase bitcoin without registration, it’s very important to have a secure cryptocurrency wallet. Initially, you should avoid keeping your bitcoins in a centralized wallet. Instead, it’s best to consider an alternative in the form of a self-custody wallet with solid security features. This means that only you have access to the wallet’s private keys. No one else can influence your bitcoin transactions. One of the best choices is Best Wallet. Not only does it offer its own storage, but it also includes security features such as two-factor authentication, fingerprint ID, and other measures.

Evaluating Exchange Rates

The most common mistake beginners make when purchasing Bitcoin through a P2P exchange is not checking the exchange rate offered by the seller. For instance, suppose you want to buy BTC with US dollars. Bitcoin’s price on spot exchanges is $67,500, but on your chosen P2P exchange, it’s offered at $68,200. This means you’ll be paying 2.5% above the current price. There are many P2P sellers who charge more than 10% above the current spot price, so make sure to check this before proceeding.

Read the Seller’s Terms

If you’ve decided to purchase bitcoin without registration, you should also look at the terms of your chosen seller. While some P2P exchanges support anonymous accounts, many sellers have introduced their own KYC requirements. We’ve found that some sellers require a copy of your officially issued ID. If you accept the agreement but do not provide it, the seller can cancel the deal, potentially leaving a negative review, which would damage your reputation on the platform. Therefore, we always recommend checking the seller’s terms before accepting any offer.

Buy Bitcoin anonymously – Final Words

Buy Bitcoin anonymously is possible, but relatively difficult. Anonymous bitcoin purchases carry additional costs and not a few security risks. If you’re not purchasing through a bitcoin ATM, where in many cases you must reveal your identity, or directly through a friend or family member you can trust, we generally do not recommend it. It’s simply best to use an alternative in the form of a DEX, to which you can connect only through cryptocurrency wallets.

All content in this article is for informational purposes only and in no way serves as investment advice. Investing in cryptocurrencies, commodities and stocks is very risky and can lead to capital losses.