Is Coinbase Safe? No Support Replies, Accounts Locked, and Site/App DownDate Written: June 23 2017 Written By: Kyle David
Coinbase.com is the go to website for cryptocurrency enthusiasts around the world, and especially in the United States. They have grown to the point of a $1b valuation, but many are doubting whether the company is fit to handle its current volume, let alone any additional users.
The problems are many, and we will break each one of them down…
1.) Horrible Support-Weeks to Reply
Many users are reporting weeks, if not near a month, to receive a reply from Coinbase. We can cite cases of this dating back to the middle of 2016, if not further. If this problem has not been fixed in (at least) a year’s time, when will it be?
The biggest concern is that these are generally fairly basic inquiries. If users cannot be helped with basic support queries, what will Coinbase do in the event of a major network wide issue?
2.) Automated Responses
Beyond taking weeks to reply, many of the initial responses are simply boiler plate templates, from “an automated email.” If Coinbase is only going to reply with automated text, why wait weeks to send it at all? One would assume a bot can reply instantly, which would be the least they can do to help speed up the process. Nothing is more frustrating than waiting many days for a reply to your ticket, only to be left with a template reply taken from the support docs (that you probably already read).
3.) Accounts Being Locked
It is totally acceptable for Coinbase to lock accounts in the event of a suspected security breach. After all, the users security needs to come first. This isn’t the issue, however.
If an account is going to be locked, there needs to be a systematic, accessible way to recover backend access. If you have thousands of dollars in bitcoin or ethereum, you likely want to be able to access it in order to place trades. Unfortunately, if Coinbase locks your account, you will not only have to jump through many hoops (understandably), but you will have to wait many weeks for the process to be completed.
Coinbase will not allow manual submission of your documents via email. Instead you will be forced to use their ID verifier, which brings us to issue number four…
4.) Faulty/Broken App and Website
In reference to the above, locked accounts can be an absolute nightmare at Coinbase. The app or website may ask you to submit documents for verification, usually multiple forms of IDs. The problem is that the verification process is clunky at best.
If you do not have your documents seamlessly approved by the ID verifier, you will be asked to submit them again. Needless to say, they will likely be denied, again. What is worse, though, is you may not even be allowed to resubmit. In one instance, users could not resubmit their IDs, and when “Try Again” was clicked, an “Invalid Token Access Code” notice was given. This error was never fixed, to the best of our knowledge.
5.) Frequent Downtimes
The biggest criticism Coinbase has faced stems from its incessant and seemingly endless downtimes. Whenever there is a spike, or drop, in the prices of BTC or ETH, you can almost count on Coinbase to go down. This is incredibly aggravating, especially considering that these are usually the best times to buy or sell.
If Coinbase can’t handle the volume they are accepting, they should’t be taking on new users at such a rapid pace. Yes, there can be blockchain issues, or other problems that are out of their hands, but to encourage signups, hold funds, and then make accounts completely unaccessible is not acceptable. Especially not with the sizeable fees that users pay per buy/sell transaction.
6.) Very Slow Buy/Sell/Transfer Processing Times
If your account is not very well aged with extensive history, be prepared to wait to see buy orders available in your Coinbase account or sell orders converted to cash in your bank account. Users will need to submit a number of verifications to place buy and sell orders, and they will need to repeat the process if they want to withdraw into a bank account and/or raise limits.
The problem here is not necessarily the process, but instead the speed. Many ACH or debit card transactions could be settled many days earlier than they are at Coinbase. If you are looking to either obtain or liquidate cryptos via cash, get ready to wait when using Coinbase.
We encourage you to share your Coinbase experiences below, good or bad, and we hope to see improved service in the future.