If I install Bitcoin Core and run it as a Full Node, will Bitcoin Core automatically verify transactions from other users? So, just by installing a Bitcoin Core Full Node, could I possibly process illegal transactions?

Or does that only happen when you install mining software?

2 Answers 2


The purpose of a full node in Bitcoin is to independently verify the consensus rules for transactions and blocks. This means your node will check every transaction and every block before accepting it as part of the heaviest chain.

Miners decide which transactions to include in a block and then full nodes check that those transactions are valid transactions before accepting the block.

From the point of view of a Bitcoin full node, there is no such thing as an "illegal transaction." There are only valid transactions and invalid transactions. Furthermore, since Bitcoin is a global network, it doesn't really make sense to talk about transactions being legal or illegal since these are local, jurisdictional concepts. For example, what is considered illegal in one country might be perfectly legal in another country. If miners in a certain jurisdiction decide to not mine a particular transaction due to a local restriction, this does not prevent miners in a different jurisdiction from mining the transaction.

  • Well, I understand that differently. The BTC Miners are creating new blocks, while the BTC nodes verify the changes to the blockchain.
    – user140388
    Feb 23, 2023 at 10:47
  • @GERMAN911 how is that different from what I said?
    – josie
    Feb 23, 2023 at 11:52
  • Yes you are right. I missunderstood something yesterday...
    – user140388
    Feb 24, 2023 at 22:28

Bitcoin Core’s primary function is to be a fully validating Bitcoin node. It’s express purpose is to independently validate the entire Bitcoin blockchain from scratch. So it will process each and every transaction that ever happened on the Bitcoin network. Whether you would consider this validation a form of “processing” transactions and whether observing other network participants’ public activity constitutes illegal behavior seems debatable.

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