Bithumb – the South Korean crypto exchange – has been busy getting back on its feet ever since it got hacked back in June. The crypto exchange lost more than $30 million of client funds, with it needing to dip into its own pocket to compensate investors. The exchange remained largely quiet, until September when it reopened its doors after fixing the bugs in the system.
Now Bithumb has partnered with Qoo10 – a Southeast Asian marketplace – to provide its services as a payment provider. Users checking out on the e-commerce site can now pay for items using crypto if they are a Bithumb customer with funds in their account.
Passwords to Pay for Items
Bithumb is making use of its new Caching system, whereby users simply have to input their password to pay for items. It launched the feature back in March, but due to the hack in the middle of summer had to delay the first use case. The only drawback of this new system is that people looking to pay for items using their crypto have to leave some funds in their Bithumb account – a very dangerous move for traders. Most traders have been taught to never leave funds in their exchange account – advice every trader should adhere to – so this new partnership could be doomed from the start.
Converting Crypto to Cash
The most important point to note with the partnership is that users won’t actually be sending their crypto to Qoo10. Instead, when a user completes the checkout process, the funds will be automatically converted into fiat and then sent to the merchant’s account. It will work similar to the BitPay payment gateway that Fancy uses to protect vendors from crypto price fluctuations during the transaction and remittance process.
eBay Getting into Crypto
Earlier this year – around the same time Bithumb was hacked – eBay acquired Qoo10 for a sum of around $573 million. This partnership in Southeast Asia to accept cryptos could be seen as a pilot program for eBay to begin accepting cryptos on its marketplace. Similarly to Qoo10, eBay would most need to use a payment provider that instantly converts crypto to fiat to help protect the merchants.
More and more shops around the globe are beginning to accept cryptos, so it’s only a matter of time before paying in cryptos is as common as using your credit card. With advances in technology like the Lightning Network and SegWit, we will see fees and confirmation times drastically reduce, making crypto payments on a global scale a legitimate possibility.