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All my Bitcoin was stolen from my Coinbase wallet - your company is egregiously negligent.

Author profile picture Oliver Kraftman
Recipient profile picture Brian Armstrong
29 July
Dear Brian Armstrong,
I’m writing to relay my experience with Coinboase over the past 12 months. It’s rather nasty, so strap yourself in. I hope this letter will give you additional motivation to fight what seem to be fundamental problems at your company. About a year ago, all the bitcoin in my Coinbase account was stolen - around $400 worth. This is obviously a fundamental breach of your security and commitment to customers as custodians of their cryptocurrency. This is obviously reason enough to complain. But mistakes can happen and even an issue of security, as fundamental as this is to a crypto wallet, is forgivable in the first instance. The response from Coinbase since, however, has been terrible; your company’s chance to make up for a mistake was traded for incompetence and egregious negligence that damages your reputation even more. Because I don’t use my Coinbase account often, I didn’t even find out about the theft until the police contacted me about it. The police were contacted by Coinbase who told them about the theft on my account. Coinbase never contacted me. When I raised a support request about the issue after speaking with the police, my account was locked for “security purposes” as if the theft had just taken place (this was 6 months later) and as if Coinbase hadn’t known for all that time that the theft had taken place. You did nothing to protect my account while I sat unaware. This is a double whammy. Coinbase didn’t tell me what happened despite knowing about it for months. But Coinbase also did nothing in the meantime to protect my account from further attacks, not even implementing the basic security procedure of locking my account, despite knowing it had already been breached. Mr Armstrong, if an account with Coinbase is less secure than a fiat bank account and your security procedures are worse than a local bank in Kentucky, wouldn’t it mean that the bigger Coinbase becomes, the more it will be undermining a fundamental purpose of cryptocurrency to be more secure store of value than fiat? If holding crypto with you (as many people do) is less secure than holding cash under your rug, how can you pretend to believe in crypto at all when your existence as a large guardian of people’s holdings is undermining its key selling point? Unfortunately, 6 months after my initial support request I have yet to receive compensation for the theft (despite the police prosecuting the case as we speak). The two support requests I made went nowhere, with the robotic, generic responses not seeming to understand the importance of what had happened or taking into account the details of this case. I have now made a formal complaint and after three times as much time Coinbase says it should take, I have received some promising responses. I’m not holding my breath. Why are such fundamental problems happening at your company? Why is your company deleting messages on Reddit about users who have had their accounts frozen on Coinbase without their consent? Did you grow too fast? Are you personally up to the job? What are you doing to sort out these problems? I hope to hear from you,

Oliver Kraftman

Author profile picture Oliver Kraftman

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