Coinbase has reassured customers that its staking services will continue and “may actually increase” despite the recent crackdown on centralized providers’ staking services by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
Popular dealers like @AltcoinPsycho pointed out a new customer email from Coinbase on March 10 that detailed its updated staking terms and conditions beginning on March 29.
With the new conditions, Coinbase makes it clear that users benefit from decentralized protocols rather than the exchange itself when receiving rewards.
The email states that Coinbase “acts only as a service provider connecting you, the validators, and the protocol,” as opposed to providing a portion of its own staking rewards, and that:
“Your staked assets will keep earning rewards. If you have any desire to keep staking, no action is required. Your staking rewards may really increase.”
While the SEC may object to Coinbase’s continued and possibly increased staking rewards, the clear separation between protocol rewards and being a service provider appears to be a move to avoid any possible gray area issues that rival exchange Kraken recently encountered.
For purportedly failing to register its staking-as-a-service program with the SEC, Kraken agreed to pay a $30 million settlement on February 9. As a result of the agreement, Kraken can no longer provide staking services in the United States.
An important claim made in the SEC’s lawsuit was that users who gave their tokens to Kraken’s staking program lost control of them, investors were promised “outsized returns untethered to any economic realities,” and Kraken was further able to pay “no gains at all.”
Numerous times, Coinbase has claimed that its staking services are fundamentally distinct from Kraken’s. On February 10, CEO Brian Armstrong added that, “if needed,” the company would gladly defend its stance in court.