Missouri State Representative Nicholas Schroer (R-107) has filed a bill aimed at declaring the use of a Blockchain or distributed ledger technology (DLT) and other types of decentralized databases to store firearm owner data in the state as illegal.

The bill, however, provides some exceptions on the use of DLT for gun monitoring. Among those exempted are the carve-outs cover law enforcement officials, merchants who use DLT or similar technology in reporting sales to the state government, and firearm owners who have issued a written authorization for the Blockchain-based monitoring of their guns.

Part of the bill titled “Imposes Restrictions on the Use of Firearm Tracking Technology” read:

"It shall be unlawful to require a person to use or be subject to electronic firearm tracking technology or to disclose any identifiable information about the person or the person's firearm for the purpose of using electronic firearm tracking technology."

Other highlights of the bill

Schroer also proposes in his bill that anyone who is found guilty of unlawfully tracking firearms using Blockchain technology may be held liable for a Class E felony.

According to law firm Carver Cantin Mynarich, LLC, class E felonies are the least severe of the felonies stated in the state’s statutes and guilty violators can face a jail time of up to four years. Some examples of class E felonies are motor fuel tax evasion, and possession of stolen and fraudulent certificates, records or reports.

The bill also differentiates electronic firearm tracking technologies against the official law enforcement tracking systems such as the Missouri Uniform Law Enforcement System (MULES) database. Electronic firearm tracking technologies refer to DLTs or other decentralized databases.

The proposed legislation is almost identical to the one signed into law by the Arizona government in February 2017.

In general, US politicians are still debating as to how to best regulate Blockchain and cryptocurrencies in the country while Senate has recently moved to consider non-disclosure of cryptocurrency holdings illegal.