Coinbase: A Comprehensive Review
Coinbase, a digital currency broker exchange, has become one of the largest crypto-broker exchanges in the world with over $20 billion in assets and over $50 billion worth of crypto traded on its platform since its founding in 2012 in San Francisco, California. Not only is it an exchange, but it also has a built-in wallet, though it's not recommended to keep your crypto there due to the security risks associated with exchange wallets. It's best to transfer your crypto to a hardware wallet, the safest type of crypto wallet.
Is Coinbase Legitimate?
Coinbase is as legitimate as they come. To operate in just 30 states in the U.S., it holds over 40 different licenses, ensuring its practices are legal and its handling of your money is trustworthy. It can be used in many countries for sending, receiving, or storing funds, but its buy and sell features are only available in 32 developed countries.
Features of Coinbase
Coinbase only offers trusted cryptos such as Bitcoin, Litecoin, Ether, and Bitcoin Cash, ensuring its users that it only offers coins that are guaranteed currencies or commodities. Its user-friendly interface is easy to navigate and it accepts a variety of fiat currencies including EUR, GBP, and USD, along with various payment methods including bank transfer, debit/credit cards, PayPal, and SEPA transfers. It also has an instant exchange feature, which converts fiat to Bitcoin, with no extra fees.
Money is Secure on Coinbase
While no online exchange is 100% safe, Coinbase is one of the safest web wallets to use, keeping almost 99% of its assets in an offline cold storage that can't be accessed or hacked, with only 1% of assets in the hot wallet system that is insured in case of loss. Additionally, Coinbase is one of only four exchanges with a license under the NY BitLicense program, adheres to strict KYC rules, and is insured, making it a safe platform to use. Users must also provide government-issued ID and, in some cases, address verification, making it impossible to use the platform anonymously.
The Downside of Using Coinbase
The only downside to using Coinbase is that it doesn't offer a vast array of cryptocurrencies like some other exchanges, limiting users to only four trusted options. Also, its fees can be higher than some other exchanges, especially for smaller transactions. Despite these drawbacks, Coinbase remains one of the safest and most trustworthy options for buying and trading crypto.
✓ Only offers the 4 most trusted cryptos (BTC, LTC, ETH & BCC) for maximum security;
✓ Adheres to policies for transparency and trustworthiness;
✓ Highly-regulated to ensure platform security and legitimacy;
✓ Multiple payment methods, including fiat transactions, and easy connection to US bank accounts;
✓ Simple to use interface and connect to GDAX for crypto trading;
✓ Comes with a highly-regarded Coinbase debit card (Shift Card) for U.S. users.
✗ Limits on spending and withdrawals;
✗ Higher-than-average fees;
✗ Not available in all countries;
✗ Strict KYC policies for monitoring transactions, preventing anonymity, and ensuring tax compliance with authorities sharing your information.