Bitcoin adoption is indeed ramping up in recent months. From retail outlets announcing users can checkout using their bitcoins to El Salvador officially accepting bitcoin as a legal tender, there is no doubt that bitcoin is headed for mainstream adoption. Coming hot on the heels of recent news of adoption is a peculiar situation with the U.K. Post Office.
A report from The Telegraph said that the Post Office was allowing the purchase of bitcoin through a new partnership. Swarm Markets, a German-based and regulated crypto exchange, entered into this partnership with the U.K. Post Office. It will allow users that have verified their identities through the Post Office EasyID app to directly access and purchase cryptocurrencies from Swarm’s websites.
Users will be able to purchase cryptocurrency vouchers with just a few clicks, which they can then go on to redeem for cryptos like Bitcoin. This has worried financial markets experts, who have warned that cryptocurrencies are very risky to invest in. Thus, users should be presented with a clear and concise warning when they are purchasing them. Concerns were also raised about associating assets as volatile as cryptocurrencies with the Post Office.
“When people buy cryptocurrencies, they should be sold with a very clear wealth warning: that you could get back a lot less than you purchased. It’s one thing buying crypto online via an investment platform, as that’s what the audience expects, but you don’t associate this with the Post Office.” – Warren Shute, Chartered Financial Planner
Swarm Markets believes that this partnership will make it easier for people to get started in crypto. “By making it easy and safe to buy real Bitcoin and Ethereum, more people now have the option to get started in crypto,” said Phillip Pieper, Co-Founder of Swarm Markets.
Buying Bitcoin In The U.K.
Just like any other region, there are numerous ways available for residents to purchase Bitcoin in the U.K. Exchanges like Binance, Coinbase, and Gemini are already operating and offering these services to U.K. residents, along with a host of other crypto exchanges.
Last month, payments giant PayPal announced that it was now expanding its crypto options to U.K. citizens. Users are not able to buy, sell, and store Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in their PayPal accounts. Although the ‘Checkout with Crypto’ feature which was made available to U.S. users was not included in this rollout. Nevertheless, this presented a new way for customers to get exposure to crypto. With PayPal allowing users to purchase as low as £1 worth of crypto.
Speaking on the partnership with Swarm Markets, a spokesperson for the U.K. Post Office said, “Access to products and services are increasingly moving online and we’ve responded to this shift by launching our free-to-use app, Post Office EasyID. Allowing people to build their own secure digital identity on their smartphone and enabling them to easily control and prove who they are to whichever business they want to interact with.”
The U.K. Post Office will not receive a commission on the bitcoin and crypto bought through the EasyID app on Swarm Markets. But Swarm Markets is paying the Post Office for the usage of its ID verification software.