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Coinbase’s Analytics Firm Denies Selling User Data Following Accusations

Reading Time: 2 minutes by on March 6, 2019 Business, Commentary, News
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After Coinbase’s Head of Sales gave an interview claiming that the firm’s previous analytics provider had been selling user Information, Elliptic released a March 4, 2019 blog post denying all allegations.

An Unfolding Saga

Coinbase has been on the receiving end of a social media campaign to the tune of the hashtag #deletecoinbase, which is due to their February 19, 2019 announcement of their acquisition of Neutrino, an analytics firm.

In a bid to clear the air, Christine Sandler, Coinbase’s Head of Sales, conducted an interview with Cheddar where she explained the decision to acquire Neutrino despite the controversial past of their co-founders. One of the reasons given was that user data was being misused by their previous provider.

“It was important for us to migrate away from our current providers,” Sandler said, adding:

 “They were selling client data to outside sources and it was compelling for us to get control over that and have proprietary technology that we could leverage to keep the data safe and protect our clients.”

Clapping Back

In her interview, Sandler didn’t mention any firm or individual by name. However, Elliptic, a London-based analytics firm that provides technology to Coinbase, has spoken out and denied any allegations of selling user data in a March 4, 2018 blog post.

The post started out by explaining that Elliptic was started with the vision of creating an open financial system will make financial services cheaper, faster, fairer, and more widely accessible, with cryptocurrency as the backbone. The post also acknowledged that there are people within the Industry that have exploited their position for personal gain.

In an apparent jab at the recent interview, the post said:

“I have been disappointed to see reporting in the past few days which has incorrectly implied that Elliptic is distributing personal information for financial gain. Such comments fundamentally misunderstand the data we analyse, the insight we share with our clients, and the role we play in the industry,”

The firm then went on to state that they do not have access to end users’ personally identifiable information and that they are not supplied any such data by Coinbase or any other firm. They also stated that they do not support or enable the violation of an individual’s financial privacy and that no user should have their Information unlawfully accessed or used by a third-party.

The post also included a FAQ section that answered various questions about Elliptic and how user data is handled by them.

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