Users of Ripple Trade wallets will be required to supply “identifiable information” later this year, according to an e-mailed notice to clients.
Ripple Trade is one of Ripple Labs’ recent additions to its suite of services. It facilitates the trading of fiat currencies, cryptocurrencies and gold in a model that cuts out the need for a broker or middleman. It also says to act as the most direct and economical venue to acquire Ripple’s XRP currency. There are no trading fees.
The service goes a step further to decentralize its model with its unique credentials and logins procedure. It does not act as trusted custodian to manage login credentials, and does not offer a mechanism of recovery should you forget your password. Instead, it displays a one-time secret key, which should be recorded and stored in a safe place. The key acts as a backup to unlock your account.
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Accounts are fully activated via deposits of bitcoin or XRP.
Despite all the decentralization, Ripple has opted to take steps making it more compliant. Bitcoin’s raison d’être, at least according to its core design, is to cut out any form of centralized authority- although layered on services like Coinbase opt otherwise. Ripple, arguably Bitcoin’s most serious competitor, is seeking to get the best of both worlds. And it may very well have no choice- it has been adopted by banks and supporting networks.
Ripple said it will be “establishing additional account creation procedures in support of a compliant Ripple network”, which will include the collection of “additional identifiable information”. The notice concludes, “An ecosystem that supports regulatory compliance builds confidence and encourages new participants to use Ripple and contribute volume to the network.”