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Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong Breaks His Silence on Cooperating with U.S. Secret Service

Sun, 07/12/2020 - 08:25
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Alex Dovbnya
Brian Armstrong defends Coinbase's decision to sell blockchain analytics software to the U.S. government
Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong Breaks His Silence on Cooperating with U.S. Secret Service
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In his Twitter thread, Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong defended his company’s controversial decision to sell blockchain analytics tools to the U.S. government.

He insists that Coinbase only uses publicly available data in order to clamp down on those who use cryptocurrencies for illicit purposes.   

Brian Armstrong
image by @brian_armstrong

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Setting the record straight

Armstrong’s statement comes after the U.S. Secret Service signed a $183,750 contract with America’s number one cryptocurrency exchange to use its proprietary software called Coinbase Analytics over the course of four years.   

The $8 bln crypto behemoth also faced severe backlash in early June after multiple outlets reported about its procurements deals with other government agencies.   

Until recently, Armstrong had been mum about Coinbase’s close relationships with Uncle Sam that are harshly criticized by the libertarian-leaning Bitcoin community.

Now, he’s making a case for maintaining stronger ties with the traditional financial system that require compliance with existing regulations. This would make it possible for more fiat money to flow into digital assets.    

image by @brian_armstrong

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Kraken CEO disagrees

In response to the latest Coinbase scandal, Kraken CEO Jesse Powell said that he didn’t want his exchange to develop its internal analytics business not to have a conflict of interest with its clients.

Moreover, he claims that selling these tools to the government was ‘at odds’ with their values.

Last year, Coinbase also appeared in hot water after hiring some former employees of Hacking Team, a Milan-based tech company that is notorious for working on surveillance software for dictators.    

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About the author

Alex Dovbnya (aka AlexMorris) is a cryptocurrency expert, trader and journalist with extensive experience of covering everything related to the burgeoning industry — from price analysis to Blockchain disruption. Alex authored more than 1,000 stories for U.Today, CryptoComes and other fintech media outlets. He’s particularly interested in regulatory trends around the globe that are shaping the future of digital assets, can be contacted at