Cryptocurrency Exchanges: Kraken – One of the Oldest and Most Secure Crypto Exchanges?

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One of the most popular and oldest cryptocurrency exchanges that exist nowadays, Kraken was founded back in 2011. Over the years, it has successfully built a reputation for being a secure destination for anyone who wishes to trade cryptocurrencies securely. It is the ideal choice for institutions as well as individual traders in different parts of the world. As it provides trading opportunities in different fiat currencies, Kraken has developed an international appeal. Moreover, it has also become the world leader in terms of Bitcoin to Euro trading volumes. The exchanged was founded in July 2011 by Jesse Powell, but it was not launched to the public officially until September, 2013.

Kraken is based in San Francisco and has had some important achievements with 2014 proving to be the most important as that’s when it earned the title of top exchange by Euro trade volume. In the same year, Kraken was also listed on the Bloomberg Terminal and launched the first verifiable cryptographic proof of reserves audit system. One of the most popular and renowned international exchanges, Kraken can be used by people in the US, various European nations and Japan. It also stands out amidst its competitors because it deals in multiple fiat currencies including the Canadian Dollar, the US Dollar, the Japanese Yen, the British Pound and the Yen.

As Kraken has been resilient to hacks and other security threats, it has developed a positive reputation in the market. After a popular crypto exchange Mt. Gox filed for bankruptcy, Kraken was selected by their administration team as a reliable partner for facilitating payments to creditors. Apart from that, a dark pool is also operated by Kraken, which is a private securities exchange, which can be used by individuals of high net worth and large financial institutions for making anonymous trades.

Important Features

There are some notable features of Kraken that have helped it in becoming one of the top cryptocurrency exchanges. Some of these include:

  • Functionality: Kraken aims to assist both beginners and advanced traders as it offers detailed documentation and a basic interface for the former and charting for the latter. An iOS mobile app of the cryptocurrency exchange is also available, which enables traders to access it on multiple devices.
  • Liquidity: Traders can enjoy a high level of liquidity and this paves the way for high trading volumes and fast funding of accounts. Proof of Reserves audit is also performed by the exchange and it is the pioneer of carrying out cryptographically-verified auditing.
  • Trading Options: You can benefit from Bitcoin Margin Trading on Kraken and it also provides leveraged trading of about 5x with shorting. You can also find advanced order types of Kraken, which include automated trading and stop-loss orders.
  • Security: Cold storage techniques have been incorporated by Kraken for keeping funds secure and it also uses GPG/PGP encryption. The platform also has a master key, two factor authentication and a global settings lock for maximizing user security.
  • International Availability: Currently, Kraken can be used in Canada, the United States, Japan and numerous European nations. It provides traders with access to about 47 market pairs along with seven base currencies. Other than that, the platform also offers support to its users 24 hours a day.

Supported Pairs and Currencies

Kraken is well-recognized for providing access to Bitcoin and Ethereum to cash (USD and EUR) markets, but that’s not all. You can also use the platform for trading a wide range of both cryptocurrencies and fiat currencies. You can trade some popular cryptocurrencies, which include Bitcoin (XBT), Tether (USDT) and Ethereum (ETH) and there are some other rising currencies such as Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Litecoin (LTC), Dash (DASH), Ethereum Classic (ETC), Monero (XMR), Dogecoin (XDG), EOS (EOS), ICONOMI (ICN), Ripple (XRP), Gnosis (GNO), Melon (MLN), Stellar/Lumens (XLM) and Augur REP tokens (REP).

As far as deposits and withdrawals are concerned, traders who sign up on Kraken can make them in USD, EUR, GBP, JPY and CAD. Fiat currency payments are usually made through bank transfer. The SEPA payment system can also be used by those who have a bank account within the European Economic Area. As mentioned above, you can also conduct margin trading on Kraken and the currency pairs that are supported include REP/EUR, REP/ETH, REP/XBT, ETC/EUR, ETC/USD, ETC/ETH, ETC/XBT, ETH/EUR, ETH/USD, ETH/XBT, XBT/USD and XBT/EUR.

Signing Up

You can easily open an account on Kraken by following the signup procedure, which requires you to enter your name, email address and password. You can either open a basic account or you can also sign up for an advanced account if you believe you have the right experience for it. For a basic account, users need to provide their name, date of birth, phone number and address whereas a more stringent verification process has to be followed by advanced account users for completing their registration.

In this case, they have to upload an ID. This can be any government issued form of identification such as your ID card, driver’s license or passport and proof of residence should also be provided like a bank statement or utility bill. A Social Security Number is required for traders in the US whereas additional ID confirmation is needed for those hailing from Japan or Germany. The documentation should be uploaded on the account and it takes a few days to get approved. Traders can add an extra layer of security to their account with 2-Factor Authentication (2FA).

You can now fund your account, which can be done through bank or wire transfers. A cryptocurrency wallet can also be used for transferring funds. The fee for transactions conducted via Kraken usually involve a maker fee of about 0.16 percent and 0.26 percent as taker’s fee. These charges are applicable for Bitcoin trades as well as for most altcoin pairs, as long as volume is under 5,000. For a higher trading volume, the charges are reduced. In addition, the transaction limit for trading on Kraken can also vary, depending on a trader’s level of verification.

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