Kraken - Safe, Secure, Simple
From 95% of cryptocurrency being stored offline in secure server cages with armed guards to the 24/7 customer support, Kraken has proven itself a key exchange in the cryptocurrency field. This article will give you a little background information on Kraken including topics such as security, platform fees, support and more. We even threw in some frequently asked questions.
Kraken is a U.S. based cryptocurrency exchange founded in 2011. Kraken's goal is to create one of the most secure exchanges and provide knowledge to everyone both new and old to the crypto space. They want to accelerate the adoption of cryptocurrency so the world can achieve financial freedom. With Kraken's “Crypto 101” video collection, video webinars, and security guides they truly are helping everyone learn more about cryptocurrency and how to stay safe.
Some say Kraken's security is overkill while others think it's perfectly acceptable. Oftentimes we think only of the security of our coins and if we can withdraw them when we need to. Kraken takes this one step further by keeping 95% of all coins offline in cold storage. Don't worry, Kraken has full reserves to make sure that you can withdraw and move your coins around as you please. Kraken's servers are also locked in a secure location with 24 hour surveillance and patrolled by armed guards. All of this paired with Kraken's penetration testing team, make sure that the platform is incredibly resistant to hacks both electronically and physically. If security is on your mind, look no further than Kraken.
If you are awake, so are they. Kraken's support team is one of the best teams in the cryptocurrency world. With hundreds of trained members, it's good to know that they have a personalized answer specific to your question. Kraken's documentation is impressively extensive. If you have a question it most likely has an article or page written about it in their help center. Rest easy knowing that they have your back 24 hours a day 7 days a week 365 days a year, including major holidays.
Kraken currently has 7 coins available to stake with plans to release many more. Staking with Kraken is simple, simply visit the staking tab and choose how much you want to stake. You can always move your staked coins around whenever you want, This is thanks to Kraken's coin reserves. Rewards are calculated daily, though you will actually get rewarded these coins twice per week. Ethereum and Flow are calculated daily but awarded once per week and as of the time of writing, Ethereum cannot currently be unstaked. Some staking options allow for “Grow Rewards” which allows you to automatically reinvest your earned rewards back into staking. Currently, the coins available to stake on Kraken are as follows:
- Tezos (XTZ)
- Cosmos (ATOM)
- Ethereum (ETH)
- Polkadot (DOT)
- Kava (KAVA)
- Kusama (KSM)
- Flow (FLOW)
Kraken fees are minimal, whether it's depositing fiat currency into your account or purchasing with a debit or credit card, they are all very reasonable. Depositing cryptocurrency into your account is simple. Most wallets have a minimum balance that you need to maintain. The minimum balance is calculated by a combination of the specific wallets address creation fee, and the deposit fee. Both the wallet creation fee, and the transfer fees are very low. There are also zero fees for the following:
- Transferring funds to and from the futures wallet
- Staking (except a 15% administrative fee on ETH staking)
- Storing funds
- Account inactivity
- Account maintenance
Kraken has 3 different levels of verification that will limit usability and specific features of the website. The three levels are Starter, Intermediate, and Pro. To begin your verification you must be 18 years of age or older and reside in a supported area. The verification for all three levels is fairly simple and Kraken will guide you through every step. To get started, simply sign in to your Kraken account, click your name in the upper right-hand corner and then click “Get Verified.” Depending on your location's local laws and how many other users are in the queue to get verified, you may be verified within a few hours to a few days. You will need to provide the following information for the “Starter” level of verification:
- Full name
- Date of birth
- Phone number
- Physical address.
Due to Kraken being around since 2011, they have to cater to all levels of user knowledge on their website. After clicking around their website for a few minutes you should be able to get the hang of it pretty quickly and if you are unsure of anything, Kraken's support team and documentation are well-equipped to help you. Not only does Kraken have a full fledged website, but Kraken also has a dedicated trading platform that they have built with a dedicated maintenance and support team.
Through our research and talking with the community we noticed similar questions being asked multiple times. We wanted to take a few minutes and put some of these questions to rest.
Kraken Pro is a mobile application that allows a professional trading experience, margin trading, advanced order types and multiple charting and order book display options. The Kraken Pro application interacts directly with their API and is available to any user in any country. It is recommended to use iOS 11 and newer or Android 7.0 or newer for best user experience. Kraken does have a new mobile application for both iOS and Android. It is recommended to use iOS 13 and newer or Android 8.0 or newer. Kraken's new mobile app is available in every country except for Crimea, Cuba, Iran, Japan, North Korea, Syria and the USA.
The IRS system relies on a Voluntary Compliance System. This means that the IRS expects you to report any and all transactions that are taxable and since 2019 that also applies to cryptocurrency. Failure to report could result in hefty fines. If you receive a 1099-K or 1099-B this means that the IRS is guaranteed to know about your cryptocurrency. It is always best practice to keep in good standing with the IRS. Reporting your cryptocurrency transactions is fairly simple, There are many online services that will aggregate your trades into an easy to read and understand form.
Kraken is a very safe service, from servers locked in a cage patrolled by armed guards 24/7 to an internal penetration testing team, Kraken's servers have a high level of protection from both physical and cyberattacks. Kraken also has full reserves which allows 95% of your coins to be housed offline and off the market. These reserves mean that there is always enough for you to withdraw and trade whenever you like.
Kraken is an excellent choice for anyone interested in buying, selling, trading, or staking cryptocurrency. New users can take advantage of the extensive educational literature and video while intermediate and expert traders can jump straight into Kraken's superb trading platform that allows for on-graph technical analysis. Kraken's team takes security very seriously, With 2-Factor Authentication (2FA) and multiple off site servers, the risk generally falls on the specific user. It is highly recommended to use 2FA and a secure password manager. Not to mention that 95% of coins are stored offline. Overall, Kraken is an excellent exchange geared towards entry level and intermediate cryptocurrency enthusiasts.
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