Crypto Cards: Revolutionary or Risky?

Crypto Cards: Revolutionary or Risky? Visa and Mastercard approach crypto from two different angles.

Two things are happening in the world that potentially make crypto easier and safer to use on a daily basis: On the one hand, Visa has entered into agreements with more than 70 exchanges to offer crypto cards, allowing crypto owners to directly spend their crypto assets using a debit card, as they would with any other pre-paid card. On the other hand, Mastercard is pursuing technology that would assess the trustworthiness of crypto sellers and coin projects to protect its clients from fraudulent purchases.

A number of exchanges already offer crypto-linked Visa cards, including Binance and Coinbase. In its latest partnership announced this week, Visa and FTX are launching a debit card service that will be available in 40 countries, across Europe, Latin America, and Asia. Basically wherever Visa is accepted, FTX accountholders can use their crypto card to spend their crypto assets. The convenience of being able to directly convert crypto into any pricing currency without having to sell it on an exchange first makes this attractive to anyone holding or being paid in crypto, or traveling internationally, for example.

However, when it comes to buying crypto, Mastercard is using analytics data from CipherTrace, a company they acquired in 2021. They also announced this week that they are creating a dashboard dubbed Crypto Secure, which tracks where cardholders buy crypto products and maintains risk profiles of more than 2400 blockchain-based firms to determine purchase approval and gain insight on risk exposure.

Do you use a Visa crypto card? Do you want your crypto purchases tracked and analyzed by Mastercard?

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Khvicha Kopinadze

CEO, Cryptal Exchange. I am a true believer in blockchain and cryptocurrencies. My background is in the venture capital industry, supporting fintech companies.