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Crypto’s Future Is Self-Custodial, Dealing a Blow to Exchanges, Says Coinbase CEO

  • Ledger, best known for its crypto hardware wallets, plans to add a cryptocurrency wallet extension to Safari
  • Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong, meanwhile, said he expects users to become more serious about taking charge of their assets

As consumer and institutional interest in digital assets grows, wallet providers are counting on crypto holders to take ownership of their assets.

Digital asset self-custody is the “future,” said Charles Hamel, vice president of product at crypto hardware wallet maker Ledger. He added that ownership is “really unique and esoteric to the things we build.”

Ledger manufactures hardware wallets that allow users to store digital assets directly on a USB drive while securely controlling their private keys, unlike web-based or software wallets.

Exchanges are also beginning to think about the role that custody and ownership play in the current digital asset landscape, Hamel said.

Crypto owners increasingly want to keep their assets for themselves, often for fear of misplacing their private keys and losing their funds forever, he said. As a result, exchanges have started offering self-custody services, often at a premium.

Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong said he expects users to become more serious about taking assets into their hands. The exchange now offers self-custody wallets and will soon give users the ability to do so directly from the app, Armstrong recently wrote blog entry.

As investors become more comfortable with the technology, concerns over ownership and security will become more prominent, Hamel said.

“The products that most crypto-forward people are using today will be used by mainstream customers a year from now and by institutions a few years later,” Armstrong wrote. “We need to start integrating them today.”

Ledger revealed plans to add a crypto wallet extension, Ledger Connect, to Safari that will allow users to connect hardware wallets to Web3 applications like Ethereum and Solana.

“We want to reduce the friction for Ledger users to bring their keys to Web3,” Hamel said.

Security is also key when it comes to self-custody, he added. Ledger Connect plans to add a new layer of security, “Web3 Check,” said Hamel, which intends to flag suspicious Web3 apps. Users are warned if an app is linked to previous scams, hacked websites, or rogue smart contracts – the latter of which are on the rise with the rise of decentralized financial protocols.

“Having something in your hand is essential for people – tangibility is really important,” Hamel said.


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The post “Crypto’s Future is Self-Custody, Dealing Blow to Exchanges,” Coinbase CEO Says, is not financial advice.

Source: Crypto News Austria

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