Plaid adds read-only support for thousands of crypto exchanges

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Plaid, a company that develops data transfer technologies to support fintech products and digital financial products such as smartphone-based wallets, today announced the addition of support for thousands of cryptocurrency exchanges to its data network. While Plaid has previously integrated with major exchanges on an ad hoc basis, the move shows that the company sees crypto as important to its growth.

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“This is something that many clients have been asking for, especially companies offering asset management and financial planning services.” – Alain Meyer, Head of Identity at Plaid, TechCrunch told TechCrunch in a recent email interview. He indicated that 16% Americans have reported investing, using or trading cryptocurrencies in 2021. according to the Pew Research Center. “Given the high volatility in the markets, we believe it is even more important for people to have a clear, real-time digital picture of their finances, including what is in their crypto accounts, in order to plan and make important financial decisions.”

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To date via Plaid, users can share cryptocurrency account information, including asset types, balances, and transactions, with other services they use. Developers can enable data through the Plaid Investments API, which now supports cryptographic accounts for use cases such as tax advice, financial planning, and net worth calculations.

Binance, Kraken, and Gemini are among the newly integrated exchanges. Support for additional platforms, including as well as BitGo scheduled for later this year, Meyer said.

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Plaid is not the first provider to bring together various cryptocurrency accounts via an API. This difference belongs to startups such as CoinAPI, BitCombine and Zabo. But Meyer claims that Plaid is one of the few that offers support for crypto exchanges along with bank account information and data from other fintech platforms.

Plaid crypto

Image credits: Plaid

“If you work with a platform like SoFi for financial planning, you will be able to see your crypto assets along with your other investments, giving you a more complete and unified view of your finances,” Meyer said. “After the account is authorized via Plaidthe service can get read-only information from the connected account.”

The cryptocurrency market is fraught with risk and criminal activity. Binance processed transactions totaling at least $2.35 billion related to hacking, investment fraud, and drug trafficking between 2017 and 2021. according to Reuters. In June, pension company IRA Financial filed a lawsuit against Gemini, alleging lax cybersecurity led to the theft of millions of dollars of customer assets from the Gemini platform.

Meyer noted that Plaid’s newly introduced support for crypto accounts is read-only, meaning that developers do not have access to transfer money on behalf of users. In addition, according to him, all crypto exchanges had to undergo due diligence and risk assessment by the Plaid team before joining the Plaid network.

“More people are learning crypto every year and it is getting more and more popular. We don’t see this trend slowing down and want to help all clients, not just those in traditional finance. That’s why we want to create services that will have the greatest impact on everyone, regardless of market conditions,” Meyer said. “We are very optimistic about the long-term potential of cryptocurrencies and digital assets to increase the transparency and efficiency of financial services.”

The introduction of support for a crypto exchange comes after Plaid moved into identity and income verification, fraud prevention and account replenishment in May, the company’s first major expansion in years. The pressure is being exerted by Stripe, one of Plaid’s main rivals, which encroached in Plaid territory this spring with the launch of connecting financial data to bank accounts.

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