Coinbase disables U.S. credit card deposits
The ability to make withdrawals in US dollars via PayPal will also be temporarily disabled in two weeks.
Cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase is preventing users from adding new credit cards as a payment method.
The policy update, recently announced on the company’s blog, reveals that for now, only customers in the United States are affected by this embargo and that “debit cards remain unaffected by this change”.
“At the moment, Coinbase cannot ensure customers will have a positive purchasing experience with a credit card,” Coinbase product manager Zachary Abrams said in the blog post.
“Many customers have added credit cards as their primary payment method; we did not make this decision lightly. We are actively working with card networks and card issuers to find a long term solution. For customers in the UK, EU, Canada, Australia and Singapore, we are collecting feedback and evaluating similar changes.”
If you already have a credit card linked to your Coinbase account, you can continue to make purchases, as long as your bank allows it. However, Coinbase warns that some banks may charge additional “cash advance” fees.
At the beginning of February an email was sent to Coinbase users with a credit card on file, encouraging them to switch to a debit card or bank account as their primary payment method to avoid incurring extra charges.
“If your credit card is blocked or to avoid cash advance fees, customers can switch their payment method to a debit card or bank account. Switching will save you money and result in higher purchase limits,” Abrams said.
PayPal withdrawals update
Over the last few weeks, USD withdrawals into PayPal accounts from Coinbase have not been operational. Coinbase said its current PayPal offering “is not meeting many customers’ expectations”. The company plans to re-enable support for two weeks and then disable PayPal entirely until the experience can be overhauled.
“We want to ensure all customers relying on PayPal have enough time to add a new withdrawal method and conduct any desired PayPal transactions,” Abrams said in the blog post.
“We know many customers prefer PayPal as their USD withdrawal method, and we’re planning on fully re-enabling PayPal later this year. Please visit our status page for updates on PayPal availability.”
Additional Coinbase updates
Coinbase will officially complete the integration of Segregated Witness (SegWit) to its exchange platform by the end of February. While SegWit may reduce fees, the firm cautioned that “once we begin rolling out this change, if you incorrectly send Bitcoin Cash (BCH) to a bitcoin (BTC) address, your funds will no longer be recoverable”.
Earlier this week, Coinbase revealed a new crypto payment option for merchants. The Coinbase Commerce button works in a similar way to the PayPal plugin but rather than accepting fiat currencies, the new service allows for virtual currencies to be integrated as electronic payments. The exchange also distributed end of year tax documents to a number of customers in the U.S. to assist with voluntary taxation compliance.
Coinbase has headquarters in San Francisco, operates in most US states, as well as Canada, the United Kingdom and Europe, and is estimated to provide trading services for around 13.3 million users worldwide.