Blast for Bitcoin: more and more webshops stop using cryptocurrency

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Blast for Bitcoin: more and more webshops stop using cryptocurrency

Bitcoin seems to be on its way out as a means of payment. Two-thirds of all webshops that ever accepted the digital currency have already stopped doing so, according to research by BNR. Volatility and anti-money laundering legislation are cited as the main reasons.

A Bitcoin machine (Harold Versteeg | AP)

BNR looked at historical overviews from BTC Direct, BitMyMoney, and Coinmap.org to see which webshops accepted bitcoin in the past. BTC Direct and BitMyMoney are both Dutch providers of crypto wallets. Coinmap.org is a database that lists all shops worldwide where you can pay in crypto. Of the 115 stores that did this, 76 have now stopped. Only 39 stores still accept the digital currency.

A tour of ten stopped webshops reveals two main reasons for phasing out Bitcoin. Most mentioned is the volatility of the currency. “If you sell a product for 80 euros worth of Bitcoin on Monday, then only 60 euros can be left on Friday,” says an online retailer.

But anti-money laundering legislation also makes it a lot more difficult to accept payments in Bitcoin. Since 2020, crypto providers must register with De Nederlandsche Bank and since 2022 strict KYC (Know Your Customer) obligations have also been in force within the crypto industry. In practice, this means that providers of crypto wallets not only need to know the personal data of their private customers, but also need to keep records of every webshop to which their customers send payments. ‘Administratively practically impossible’, says Merel Hendrikse head of KYC at wallet provider BitMyMoney.


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