by Jamie Holmes
It has been around one week since the launch of LocalMonero.co and buyers and sellers of the privacy-focused cryptocurrency have already traded monero in many countries around the world.
Launched by Monero enthusiasts out of Hong Kong, they based the peer-to-peer marketplace on the popular LocalBitcoins.com.
Consequently, monero (XMR) is now easier to buy and sell, as the site allows users to exchange cash for the cryptocurrency or via online banking. Similarly, those who mine or trade monero can sell their crypto holdings. With very limited coverage on bitcoin ATMs and strict KYC procedures for exchanges that host XMR pairs, such as Kraken and Bittrex, LocalMonero is a welcome step for making it easier to purchase or sell the cryptocurrency as well as remaining anonymous while doing so.
Follow a quick search of the marketplace, it hasn’t got an abundance of sellers or buyers, but it is only the first week and it will take some time to become established. Moreover, the community is forward-looking and usually pre-empt problems that are anticipated down the line.
With LocalMonero, a few members of the community decided to simplify access to monero. One of the most frequent questions asked by newcomers to the crypto scene is ‘How do I buy bitcoin/monero?’ Most people purchase bitcoin then exchange for monero and bypassing this step encourages greater adoption.
In line with the philosophy behind Monero, the founders stated that they are ‘committed to your security and privacy.’ Users can create an account without an email address and their IPs are not logged. Chat logs are encrypted and kept for 180 days. Further features users can expect are; a Tor hidden service, a JavaScrypt-free version of the site and SMS notifications.
However, it may take some time to win over the entire community. Since the site uses Google Analytics, IPs of users are stored by Google. But because the business is in a very early stage, the costs of a self-hosted analytics service are deemed undesirable by LocalMonero.co. Nevertheless, the founder stated:
“We take extra precautions to make sure that the website is completely usable for people blocking Google services. We promise that if the business starts to generate us profit we will stop using Google and Cloudflare completely and switch to private alternatives.”
The launch of LocalMonero comes closely on the heels of the cryptocurrency’s addition to the Korean exchange Bithumb and increased interest from a wider audience. The price of monero has increased substantially as a result, holding above the $140 handle.
At just over three years old, the Monero ecosystem is maturing, with LocalMonero providing a vital fiat gateway for the cryptocurrency.