Exchange News

Coinbase customers delete accounts after the exchange acquired a firm with a tainted past

Coinbase customers are not happy with the latest acquisition deal between the exchange and Neutrino, a firm which Coinbase customers argue has a tainted past and the crypto exchange should not have acquired it.

To express their disappointment, some of the exchange’s customers are deleting their accounts on the platform.

For context, Neutrino’s top team members who comprise of the CEO, CTO, and CRO, were reported to be behind Hacking Team, a firm which developed spyware software tools, one of which landed in the hands of governments that have less value for human rights. For example, one was linked to the Saudi Arabian government in a relationship that saw a journalist killed.

Coinbase customers are now running a campaign on Twitter under the hashtag deleteCoinbase. As reported by CoinDesk, notable individuals in the cryptocurrency/blockchain industry have since indicated the acquisition of Neutrino by Coinbase was a bad idea.

While speaking to CoinDesk, a chief strategy officer at CoinShares, an asset manager, Maltem Demirors, said that the cryptocurrency exchange could have chosen a different blockchain analysis firm since there are plenty of reputable firms.

For Demirors:

There are so many other services out there that don’t have these reputational issues, and frankly the ethical issues that some of these Neutrino founders have. This acquisition of Neutrino supports the idea of using Bitcoin for surveillance capitalism.

On whether Coinbase knew about the tainted past of Neutrino’s top team, the exchange told the Block that they:

[Were] aware that Neutrino’s co-founders previously worked at Hacking Team, but it was important for Coinbase to bring this function in-house to fully control and protect customers’ data and Neutrino’s technology was the best we encountered in the space to achieve this goal.

However, although some Coinbase customers have posted their Coinbase account deactivation screenshots on Twitter. It has not been yet established how many Coinbase customers have deleted their accounts.

Do you think the Coinbase customers are fearing for their privacy and is the #deleteCoinbase campaign likely to gain widespread adoption?

Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.


Philip is an experienced blogger keen on staying updated with trends and news surrounding the blockchain and Bitcoin space. With several years of freelance experience in various industries, Philip brings his knowledge and experience into the crypto space.

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