Launched just a few years after Bitcoin, Kraken is one of the most popular places to buy and sell cryptocurrencies.
With over 160 coins available to trade, low bitcoin withdrawal fees, and plenty of educational content for beginners, Kraken’s offering puts it among the best in the industry.
Here’s a closer look at Kraken’s questionable features, fees, and flaws.
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Kraken is big on security. Although individual users have claimed their accounts have been hacked in online posts, Kraken itself claims that the platform has never been hacked in its nine-year history.
Crypto exchange review site CER ranks Kraken #2 out of 100 exchanges for security, giving it AAA status.
Kraken says it has full reserves, which means you will be able to withdraw all of your assets at any time without worrying about liquidity in the exchange.
Kraken’s servers are kept in secure cages with 24/7 video and surveillance by armed guards. The exchange says physical access to its servers and code deployment are strictly controlled.
Accounts are secured by two-factor authentication via Google Authenticator and/or Yubikey.
Elsewhere, Kraken offers:
- encrypted email for secure communication
- confirmation email for withdrawals
- Configurable count timeout limits.
On the one hand, Kraken makes it easy for beginners to make their first trades with its instant buy feature.
On the other hand, the platform assumes a degree of pre-knowledge that newcomers might find confusing. However, Kraken offers plenty of educational content to help you get up to speed.
For basic Kraken users (there’s a premium version if you want more advanced features), transactions incur a fee of 0.9% or 1.5%, depending on whether you’re trading stablecoins like USDC or coins ordinary like Bitcoin or Ethereum.
Fees are lower for Kraken Pro users, with maker fees capping at 0.16% and taker fees capped at a maximum of 0.26%. Fees also decrease on a sliding scale as trading volume increases.
Kraken accepts various payment methods for deposits but, as usual, charges fees of up to 3.75% on debit and credit card transactions. A 0.5% fee applies to bank transfers.
Be aware that credit cards are generally considered a bad way to buy crypto because your investment could drop, leaving you with debt that exceeds your assets.
For more advanced traders, Kraken also offers margin trading and staking. Margin trading is a risky investment strategy that involves borrowing money to buy stocks.
Staking involves putting up some of your assets for a chance to earn rewards as part of a staking pool on a blockchain that uses “proof of stake” as a consensus mechanism – what Ethereum is about. poised to become, once its long-awaited merger is complete.
Your staked assets are combined with those of other stakers to compete for a chance to verify a block of transactions on the blockchain in exchange for a reward, from which you could earn a share.
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Kraken Under The Microscope – Forbes Advisor UK – Tech Tribune France
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